We pulled out of Niwot, CO, my old home, after taking a picture of me standing under an “Old Town Niwot” banner just outside aswanky French restaurant.
When I lived here 31 years ago, Niwot was a punch line. Almost no one had ever heard of it, and, if they had, they knew it was a sleepy little community plunked down in the middle of cornfields with a couple antique stores that woke up on the weekend. Now it’s an upscale little town. The cornfields are long gone, as are most buildable lots.
I shared a house with Jim and, though he lives in the same house, it’s barely recognizable. Only one familiar roofline remains. The rest has been enclosed in a fanciful home of towers, arches, and odd angles. Jim used to be a builder. Now he's an architect. I think architects always have to make a statement with their own home.
It was fun spending time with Jim and Kim. The kids got along well too. They were always racing somewhere together. We enjoyed hearing Quinn walk around the house playing the sousaphone and seeing Lark try to play Jim’s long dormant accordion.
I felt a little sorry to be leaving, although some of that was just the pleasure of being in a real home rather than living out of the back of a minivan.
Hopefully it won’t be 28 years before we see the Kalinski’s again. As we left, we said “Your nursing home or mine?”