One Person’s Rights Are Another’s Wrongs

By Martha Quillen

I always check out the maxims posted in front of Salida’s Episcopal church. They’re often clever or funny, and occasionally downright thought-provoking. But in July one of them struck me as way too optimistic. “If it is good and right,” the sign declared, “then it will be.”

After I walked by, I started formulating sayings that I felt were more credible:

If it is good and right … then it won’t get through Congress.

If it is good and right … my ex (or kids) won’t have anything to do with it.

If it is good and right – and harmless, too – it’s probably boring.

If it is good and right … then prove it in court.

If it is good and right … the NRA will claim it violates our Second Amendment rights.

If it is good and (made) right … it probably has too many calories.

If it is good and right … my mother (or mother-in-law, husband, boss, kids – pick your critic) will make sure I hear about it.

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In Regard to Tourism: Be Careful What You Ask For

By Martha Quillen

In the early seventies my husband and I moved to Kremmling, which was the sort of small Colorado mountain town you passed through on your way to somewhere else. We bought, and then later sold, the weekly newspaper in Kremmling, then headed south to Salida in the spring of 1978.

Although lower in elevation, Salida was presumably a step up. It was four times bigger than Kremmling, and a lot of its homes and buildings were picturesque, historical and made of brick. Plus they faced paved streets with curbs and sidewalks.

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Walking in the Bleak September

  by Martha Quillen

A friend and I spent a Wednesday in mid-September hiking near Tincup. It was an Edgar Allen Poe sort of day – gloomy, gray and melancholy: “Ah, distinctly I remember, it was in the bleak December.” Except, of course, it was September. On that rainy, cold September day, the brush was wet and the trails muddy. Clouds obscured the ridges, and mist shrouded the evergreens, but golden aspen brightened the slopes.

Although we walked for hours, we didn’t pass a single other person afoot, which was understandable. It was perfect weather for settling into a cozy armchair in front of a crackling fire to read a gothic novel. But it was far too beautiful to stay indoors.

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