There are times when my morning drive to work are the most peaceful of the day. Sunrise in the Las Vegas valley is often breathtaking. There have been a few recently that were so dramatic, I couldn't help but stare and wonder off into thoughts of how beautiful would they become if I was watching it from a beach front home with Carl and our pups in Grand Cayman. The smell of the ocean and the fresh air are so vivid in my memory, I can't help but smile, and a sudden and most welcome sense of peace overcomes me. Some would call it a "pipe dream" or mere "fantasy" to feel that we could ever be in the financial position to make such a move. I don't want to even concider that, because then, it would become a goal that would seem unreachable. I have been fortunate enough to witness a few sunrises in Grand Cayman, and they give me such a feeling of calm, of peace, love and pure happieness.
The memory of the sunrise the morning of our wedding day was such an event. I woke, not because of insomnia, but because I was rested, content, and happy. Carl was snoring quietly and rather gently, and I woke and went to the patio of our room, opened the door, and stared at the glowing sky. The soft and comforting sounds of the ocean were almost overwhelming. Our room over looked an atrium at the Hotel, with a small brook, some trees, and a collection of turles, quietly keeping watch over any activity passing them by. The sound of water is pure joy to me. I remember thinking that this couldn't be real, that I was actually standing there, at that moment, taking the sea air into my lungs and processing the thought that I sincerely never wanted to leave. Searching my brain over and over for any possible way for us to stay on that island, have the puppies sent to us, and watch countless, multiple, endless morning skies, evening skies, sun filled days....serenity.
I have always been very proud to be a true Las Vegas native. I remember getting into a very heated argument with a classmate in England over this very fact. I was 8 when my father was stationed at Upper Heyford Air Force Base, and I don't remember any other time in my childhood, other than the time in Arizona with my Grandmother and Aunt, that I felt happy, safe, and loved. I said that I was born in Las Vegas, and was immediately called a liar. I was furious, fiercely defending myself. Why would I lie? I find I have to have the same conversation as an adult, with countless tourists that ask me where I am from, and when I say "Las Vegas, born and raised" they always reply with, "no your not" or "really?" in disbelief like decent human beings don't actually LIVE here. One woman so boldly spouted off that she would "NEVER even think of actually raising children here." I was so offended by her, I had to walk away.