Black Rock

Black_Rock.jpg

Every now and then, we find perfect places. Places can have the potential of feeling perfect, but the circumstances can sometimes feel off–and if we're lucky, place and circumstance collide in the most miraculous of ways.

Floating through the canyons of the Colorado River, the water is murky, opaque with ancient silt and the disturbed clay of the river floor, but warm and easy to slide into and remain content for hours. We have rafts–large blue ones that stick out against the dry browns and greens of the surrounding desert–but most of us slip into the water to slowly meander in the direction of our campsite. At one moment, we're in the shade of enveloping canyon walls, another, we emerge into the gentle, sun-bleached waves, catching a glimpse of the brief stretches of vibrant green wetland-like grass, a symptom of our rainy summer. 

It's effortless. We have nowhere else to be, and no real way of getting there faster, even if we wanted to. Ocassionally, when our hands and feet go pruney, we climb on the boats and paddle in long, mechanical strokes. We drink warm beer; and some cold ones if we're lucky.

Towards the end of the day, when the shadows start creeping in on the river, we turn a corner into Black Rock, where the river makes an abrupt left turn and black metamorphic rock appears, some of the oldest rock in the area. The water turns glassy, all goes quiet, and it's as if we've entered into an age-old land–a secret that only few get to see. 

In truth, it's no secret at all: this was the goal for other rafters like us. It's tranquility and serenity at it's best, with the smooth black rock formations creating hidden shelter, and ideal swimming holes.  

It's the kind of peace that washes over you and resides there even after you're gone.

 

Hello, everyone.

And I don't self-indulge here. I realize that right now, everyone is really just me.  

I built samfields.com in an effort to legitimize my freelance career, a career path that I love and still have a lot to learn from. I've always loved stories--both reading and telling them. In school, writing them took up most of my time. I let it get away from me for a few years when my job in music didn't require it, but it manifested itself inside me in all kinds of ways: in my car, cooking dinner, and on hikes I would unconsciously write stories in my head, most of which never made it to paper. When I worked for a band and was working their shows, I watched and envied the music journalists and photographers in the front row as they were spinning out the ways in which they could tell the story of the night, something I did myself but never recognized as a direction.

When I started writing about music in Denver, it opened me up. Not just to working on the side that I always felt I should be on, and not even specifically to music, but to feeling as close to my true self as I ever had.

Since then, I've continued to write in as many capacities as I possibly can. Music writing gave way to food writing, food writing to a position as a pitch writer and publicist for a firm that specialized in food and food personalities. The beauty of leaving stability for a feast-or-famine existence is the ability to shift from role to role--one day I'll write about a new distillery opening, the next I could write a show review. Last year my boyfriend Casey and I stumbled across a beautiful little travel book about Nashville, a find that gave me a dream opportunity to help write a travel guide and a mentor that I will always look to for inspiration. 

So whether it's sharing a recipe, a book recommendation, or more likely, ramblings to be ignored, this is my new place for them. I hope I can tell the story of my journey well, and if you're out there listening, I'm both surprised and grateful.