Leaps and Bounds

Boise is growing by leaps and bounds and with it, big changes are happening. I have always said, “Change is good,” because generally good things emerge with change, but now I’m not so sure. The acres of corn and other grain that grew in fields in and around Boise now closely resemble houses. I miss the smell of mint that I used to smell on Highway 16 on the way to Emmett. The night sky has fewer stars, and a change that I didn’t anticipate: the view between the Capitol Building and the Boise Depot, two of Boise’s favorite landmarks, is now partially obstructed.

This morning I noticed two new shops that I hadn’t seen before, one was a store dedicated entirely to salt. Whatever happened to Morton’s? A round, blue box on the shelf at Albertsons that weighed about a pound, iodized or plain. Now and then, I would buy rock salt to make home-made ice cream, but that was once or twice in the summer and only if my kids had behaved all day. That was my entire salt supply. I never was a salter, so my Morton’s is probably years past its expiration date. I remember buying a new box of Morton’s when we moved to Jerome, but that was in 1999. I’m sure it’s still good. I decided that in the spirit of doing new and adventurous things, I should have a look at the salt store. I must be out of the zone because there were no blue boxes, but I saw smoked salt, dead sea salt, and pink Himalayan salt, but no Morton’s in the blue box. What is the world coming to?

The other store that surprised me was a water store. It baffled me because good, clean water is readily available throughout the city from the kitchen faucet. Easy peasy, just twist the little knob or raise it up or push it down and, lo and behold, water flows from the spigot. A lot of people drink water from bottles and once in a while I do, too, because it’s convenient when I am traveling, and I don’t have to carry a thermos, which means I need a backpack or an extra purse. The store carried flavored water, spring water, purified water, bubbly water, and the most puzzling of all, smart water. How or why is water smart, I’d like to know?

Yesterday I had to drive across town to visit a friend, and it took me forty-five minutes to arrive. Am I complaining? Yes, I am because the same trip two years ago took fifteen minutes, and even then, I could take a quick detour for a coffee break if I needed to. This morning I was out early (it’s the only safe time to drive) and counted twenty-six cars in line at one of the drive-through coffee shops. I love it that those people who are not native Idahoans love my state, but could you please leave your cars behind when you move here?

More changes are coming. I don’t much like being a curmudgeon, and will adjust to change if I need to, maybe. I have just one request, keep Idaho the way it has been…that’s why people want to move here.

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