The first time I ever set foot in Nevada was back in the early 1980’s when I came over on I-14 from Los Angeles to Las Vegas. It was a “buddy weekend” in “sin city” which I could have no idea would eventually morph itself into my future home…the home of my wife’s birth, and my two daughters, decades later. My pal and I stayed at the Marina Hotel in Vegas which later turned into the MGM. The most memorable part of that trip was a visit to the gift shop where I picked up and bought a copy of Nevada Magazine. I remember being drawn to the cover by the black and white photo of a group of “Nevada Buckaroo’s” and the story inside was about some gathering of cowboys in a town named Elko. These cowboys got together to sling a bunch of “cowboy poetry.” Now, to a young man from California who felt trapped in the wrong century, this was the coolest damn thing I had ever about. My mind immediately started trying to figure out how to plant that mind and body into this state for “throw backs”. Even while being surrounded by neon and thousands of people, I had a sense that this amazing state was really made up of the folks presented in that magazine.
Fast forward to the mid ’80’s, and I finally had the courage to say “adios” to the state of my birth. I pulled a small U-Haul trailer behind my Ford Ranger over Donner Summit and landed in my new home of Reno. What a town it was then back then…Harold’s Club with the gun collection and the Presidential Car Restaurant, and of course, Colombo’s by the River. As the clock continued to run, two decades passed without me even noticing. On a clear afternoon in April of ’06, I bid farewell to the men and women of the Reno Police Department, who I had served with for over twenty years of my life. A month later, I loaded the horses and was off to our new home in Winnemucca, Nevada.
So, as I look back now over almost twenty-eight years in Nevada, I know for sure, that no matter what county I may be living in, that I am “Home”. This place with its sky’s that have no beginning or end, and seas of sage, that captures a soul more than anything, or place on earth. The silence of snow covered mountain tops or aspen groves in the spring, is something that must be experienced to be believed. And truly, if it doesn’t move you…move on. And let us be. In the greatest state of this union…NEVADA.