Wednesday, April 12, 2006

Initial Impressions of "the Springs"
Disclaimer: Please note that these are impressions based on 2 days wondering through the town and very little else.

I have been struck by the opposing forces of Colorado Springs.

Yesterday I felt the effects of culture shock. The conservative Christian values of the town can be clearly seen and heard; a great shock to the system after two years living in liberal Portland, OR. While driving around, I saw a truck with an explicit statement written on the tailgate, but I suppose out of reverence for conservative values, the owner had kindly edited his own statement with the following: "F*!#". I knew had I been in Portland the four letters of the word would be clearly displayed. Radio stations have bleeped words that I never would have thought of bleeping. During a local radio morning show, they even referred to sex as "baking" (not a Christian station).

Yet, walking around downtown this afternoon I saw many who clashed with the conservatism around them. I felt at home walking past skaters and thugs of all sorts. I felt a strong backlash against conservative Christiandom as we visited the shops of Manitou Springs--mysticism and witchcraft popping up everywhere. There is even an anti-war demonstration set-up near our hotel, reminding of similar scenes I have seen at Reed College and elsewhere in Portland.

I greatly enjoy downtown Colorado Springs. It has the feel of small town Colorado. Walking its streets, you quickly forget the sprawling urban setting you are in. Colorado Springs is a city of approximately 300,000. By 2010 it is expected to surpass Denver in population (Denver proper, not the complete metro area). But in downtown, you feel none of this.

Fuller Colorado is located in this area. This morning my father and I met with Lindy and got to see the "campus" or rather the suite of the office building it is located in. I liked it a lot and feel that I will do well in the small setting (class sizes ranging from 15-30).

On a completely other note, I ask for your prayers tomorrow morning. I have a job interview at the local Barnes and Noble. Considering when I turned my application in yesterday they told me that they weren't hiring, I was shocked to get a call from the manager today. He is even coming in on his day off to meet with me in the morning. This would be an excellent opportunity--full benefits, a job that I can leave at the job, close in proximity to the school and to where I will likely be living, a chance to work with people who won't look just like me in the aspects of school or church. Thanks for you prayers.


Adam Wolfgang said...

That is awsome, I am praying that you can retire a dedicated employee of Barns and Noble many years from now.

Glad to hear you are well. I will keep up with you using this blessed avenue. God bless you.

Jason Hill said...

I'll be praying for your interview.

Katey said...

I'm glad you got there safe! Colorado is like a second home to me- our summer vacations every year growing up were to Glenwood Springs/Carbondale, and I also have an uncle and aunt in the Springs. Manitou is one of all-time favorites as well- it does clash quite interestingly with the Springs, but I enjoy it a lot. I'm keeping you in my thoughts and prayers- I know you'll be great!

Allan White said...

Don't forget that C-Springs is pretty much an island of conservatism and Christianity in an ocean of liberalism. It's interesting that you see those worlds touching at the edges (outlying areas).

As beautiful as it is there, I never could quite feel at home there. Too much tension under the glittering surface.