Why Does Everyone Smile in Sandpoint?

Real Estate

Oh my gosh!

I died and went to Heaven (thank you, Jesus!). Just kidding, I'm still here.

Being "new" to the Sandpoint Area, I am so taken aback by the beauty, I am just always in awe.

The mountains surround our little town of Sandpoint. Everywhere Mountains. The views have been compared to the fjords of Scandinavia. Walk out of Walmart and reach out and touch Schweitzer ski resort. You can see the city up there, and the ski runs. Breathtaking summer, winter, fall or spring!

Then there's the lake and its beauty. You drive over the "long bridge" (which is the number one spot in Sandpoint that takes your breath away). A picture can't even capture it.

I drove to Coeur D Alene the other morning, and the mist was over the lake. This beautiful glassy lake surrounded by mountains, and this glassy water with a layer of mist dancing on top. It was picture perfect. I just have to smile to myself because there no one to tell at the moment! Who would understand anyway?

You have all seen that picture of the elk, or the bear coming through the meadow with the mist up to their knees? Just wow!

Of course, everyone thinks the oceans are the bomb. So did I for many years being actively involved in teaching diving, running dive boats, swimming with any and everything in the ocean, no doubt very awesome creation. I always said, I'd rather be in the ocean and seeing things below than on it. It is pretty dull from a scenery perspective, it's is just a vast blue horizon....there nothing to the right or the left.

On our lake Pend D Orielle, the mountains just seem to come straight up from below. You feel like you can just touch them. Oh my gosh! For those who have been to Alaska, it's the same feeling there. Surrounded by natural beauty up close and personal.

The lake itself (Lake Pend Oreille) lies within the "Purcell Trench" which is a chasm in the Rocky Mountain chain that stretches a couple of hundred miles from the Idaho Panhandle well into Canada. This steep-sided valley was created by forces deep in Earth’s crust hundreds of millions of years ago. Sediments in a vast seabed from the secret past buckled and rose, forming the ancient mountain range of the Cabinets. Then igneous intrusions pushed their way to the surface, and in a cataclysm of mountain building, the Selkirk Mountains were born around 135 million years ago. This history also created the beautiful rivers and other small lakes that dot the surrounding areas.

Then there is the beauty of the people who live here. I just saw a post on trip advisor today about how unfriendly people in the Sandpoint area were today.

I was a bit shocked.

My experience has been anything BUT that. My husband still says frequently, "I haven't met a person I haven't liked yet." Nieve maybe, we'll see but so far slightly amazed.

It so foreign to look at someone and they actually say "hi" or smile or do both. Some even STOP to engage in conversation. Try to talk to someone in Hawaii, and they just ignore you or snarl back (stink eye). I know this seems odd from the "Aloha state," but you live there 20 years and get back to me.

People here are courteous, patient, they will hold a door open for you! I watch families pray before they eat. Churches are everywhere, and they are full. Do folks here smile because they live in a real paradise, close to nature and God's evidential creation? Do they smile because they were raised with healthy principals, family values and balance? Do they smile because they really feel they are whole and complete and don't need what the rest of the world claims is essential? Do they smile because they were just taught to be courteous? Do they smile because they are only pretty all around happy and have joy in their hearts? I vote for the latter.

Understanding what is happening around the world and the US, it seems a lot of people are leaving CA and WA to move to other locals to escape the madness and find a simpler life perhaps they once remembered. This transition is terrific because IT IS a refreshing sanctuary here. Look no further (caveat you have to be ok with the seasons!)

The fear is, trying to bring CA and WA (or wherever) to Idaho. I saw this in Hawaii over a 20 year period. I always say Maui is like dropping LA onto an Island. Each Island has its unique draw and personality.

Human nature.

I hope and pray our little town stays friendly and pure and simple. Too much to expect? I hope not!