When Muhammad…

When Muhammad (me) can’t go to the mountains, the mountains come to Muhammad via Simon and Trolly dog.

This year has been very difficult due to an illness that kept me incapacitated from December 22, 2018 through May 2019. I finally returned to Aspen at the end of July for a recuperative and very quiet time.  I have not done a blog post and very little Instagram this entire 2019. In my next post I shall go into more detail and the effects of this experience on my thinking. But now back to convalescing in Aspen. Although I was never a big hiker like my friend Simon, I still got out once in a while to see the beauty of the mountains in their glory. This summer I was not able to handle any exertion and therefore unable to hike. My sherpas Simon and Trolly dog, plus some of their hiking pals brought the mountains to me through mountains of photos of an extraordinary wildflower season.

The brilliant colors of wild and domesticated flowers has been amazing. The two center photos are of a friends 1/4 mile long garden of wild and domesticated flowers.  The far left & right photos are brilliant splashes of color that popped up under a rock or a fallen tree on the mountain path. People have often commented on my color sense. I learned it… to learn about color one should observe nature. She is the best colorist in the world!

Life in the mountains… the remembrance of parties past…

In the past I have entertained a great deal and so enjoyed creating table themes. But not this year, although I still like to look at parties past. I seldom do an exact replica of a table, but look at old pictures to jog my memory about something I have in storage or  see an idea I have not done in a long time… believe me this memory needs a lot of jogging.

The wild and not so wild life in the mountains…

The mountains are full of wildlife as well as domesticated  animals. Several alpacas are always at the Saturday farmers market. I take my pups- Monkey, (above photo) plus the other three to visit the ghost town of Ashcroft. This  only little hike I have taken this year. Simon brings back photos of bighorn sheep and I rather stupidly decided to try and photograph a big moose next to the house (this is a picture from last year when I could actually follow a moose). Simon was telling me to stop because they can charge during the rutting season and this guy was was enormous. Fortunately this year we have seen no coyotes– I am terrified because of my dogs and am on constant watch. But guess who came for breakfast this morning? Another moose! We named her Chocolate– she stayed all morning behind the house eating and then sat down having a nice nap! I think I heard her snoring. I just posted her to Instagram.

Setting autumnal tables is so easy and fun (above) Aspen markets sell lots of mums for instant and affordable decoration.

The mountains in all of their glory and their fearful massive destruction

This past winter aspen experienced horrible avalanches. When Simon’s hiking group came across these avalanche fields where an entire valley was destroyed, they had no idea how almost impossible and dangerous it would be to transverse them. And yet… the strength of these very small yet mighty wild flowers continue to magically pop up amidst destruction.

I stayed close to home taking the occasional photograph and tried to paint. Although this is a painting from last summer I have yet to have finished one from this summer as a byproduct of my illness. But one just has to keep trying. I can make the analysis of the avalanche to my illness: One may be felled but like a small flower one has to try and bloom…

Re-blooming is helped by the love and care of people like Simon and wonder hounds like Trolly. (below)