Friday, August 1, 2008

Who Knew? VooDoo in Manitou?

Last night it was HOT! It was DANG HOT! So Don and I decided to take a drive. (Yes...I am aware that gas is now 4 dollars and whatever-cents-they-add-to-it-today.) I had been home most of the day knitting, trying to finish my afghan for the Colorado State Fair and I was miserable...not from knitting, but from the heat of sitting under a wool afghan all day in a house with no air conditioning and only ceiling fans to circulate to air. My only consolation is that nobody has air here because there aren't that many days that we need air so anybody home yesterday was as miserable as I was. Is that sick or what!!!

ANYWAY.....we hopped in the car and drove over to Manitou Springs. What can I say about Manitou? Ok, we loooooovvvvveeee Manitou. We go there almost everyday because it is a cool place to be. There are a lot of old hippy- and metaphysical-types and a large Christian ministry in the midst of it all. The town sits at the bottom of Pikes Peak and it's so cool because the houses all go up the sides of the surrounding foothills of the Rockies. One of my favorite things is Barr Trail, which is the hiking trail to the top of Pikes Peak. By the way, we appreciate the Earth Spirit Pagans who so faithfully maintain the upkeep of the trail. Blessed B...I mean, God Bless You!

It was fastly approaching nightfall when we drove through Garden of the Gods. We got to Balanced Rock and there were two young boys standing on top of one of the rocks. Everything in me wanted to cry out, "watch out. Don't fall!" But these rocks are really big and no one is supposed to climb them without a permit and I didn't want to hear "splat" as we drove by. Now that brings up something else: every year there are a lot of people who vacation here. Hiking is a big thing here because, after all, it IS the Rocky Mountains and they are REALLY big mountains, but someone always veers off the trails and ends up falling. I have noticed, almost without fail, that these people are from Texas. What is up with that!!! It says one of two things: (1) all of our tourist population is from Texas, or (2) the Texans are the only ones who read the "stay on the trail" signs and wander off anyway. (I don't know...I could be wrong!) So we finally make it to Manitou and Don says "Do you want to you to Fatso's?" "Who?", I say. "You know...Chubby's!" I say, "You mean, Tubby's?" "Yeah..that's the one." Then he says, "if you're praying, can you pray for my memory to get better?" We drive in to Tubby's, which is a convenience slash grocery store in downtown Manitou, to get an ice cream bar and a soda. There's a new guy behind the counter. He has no hair. (That is not pertinent to this story.) When we went to the counter to pay for our snacks we said, "You new here?" "Yeah..about 3 months." "Where did you come from?" He said, "well, I put a map on the table and tossed a dime in the air and where it landed I drove because I was sick of L.A. My girlfriend drove from Virginia, I drove from L.A. and we met up here." Then he told us about his new business venture. Apparently he and his girlfriend have an internet business together that is doing fairly well. We had to ask..."what kind of business?" "Oh, we sell occult parephenalia". (Yes..that how to spell that word. My hubby and I had quite a discussion, I googled it, he still said no, googled it and STILL said it was wrong. So go figure!) Back at the store: I looked at the guy and said "cool". Cool? Cool? Why did I say cool? As we walked out the door he said, "there's a lot of money to be made in voodoo." Who knew? Voodoo in Manitou?

Now as things often happen, something occurred that would make the voodoo thing feel more apparent and almost comical. In the summers on Thursday night local drummers meet in a park in Manitou and drum togeth. Last night was (you guessed it) THURSDAY. And their drumming sounded like tribal mystical drumming from the jungles (you know, like what you see in the movies or from National Geographics). So I sarcastically thought "there's voodooing amongst us. We stopped the car and sat and listened for a while laughing about the irony and coincidence of voodoo and drumming that sounded as if it were calling up the spirits. (There is a longstanding rumor that witches, covens, etc. reside in Manitou.) We go there because there's always something "interesting" to see.

Manitou is known for its "healing" waters. There is a system of artesian springs and back in the day, people came from all over to drink these "medicinal cures". They would go from spring to spring drinking for their curative benefits. We take water from these springs (which have all been tapped now) and some of them are amazingly good. In fact, did you know that Colorado Springs has no springs at all? They are named after the springs in Manitou. But let me warn you...there is one spring close to the Manitou Incline (railroad to top of the Peak) that tastes like you just put an old rusty pipe in your mouth. So skip that one, will you?

Until next time...

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