Tony’s adventures in Colorado.
Trolls are a diverse race and can be found in virtually every part of the world. While most are gynormous in size and rather ugly, this is a tale of a small cute troll named Dam that took me for a ride.
It all started inside the old building where I use to live. An old resort back in the 1800’s and part of a community that utilized the springs across the street and up the mountain for healing, the place looked and felt creepy. The American Indians considered this area sacred. Modern folk see it as charming, mystical and sometimes dark.
Looking out the window of my apartment one snowy morning while cooking bunny stew, I heard faint little voices in the hallway outside the apartment door. But the attempt to find out who or what was making them turned futile for several weeks.
That was, until I decided to go shopping at the Trippin’ Trolls store.
Casually checking out the troll dolls inside a giant glass case on the wall, a voice called out to me, “Psst, hey you!” After regaining composure and focusing on this one troll high up on the shelf, I said, “Huh?” The troll was about six inches tall with white hair, big hazel eyes and wearing overalls made out of a burlap sack. I must admit, it was very unusual talking to a troll.
“Look, I need someone to talk to, the troll said. My name is Dam. Moved from the East coast a few weeks ago for work and took this gig at the Tripping Troll, but hate it. Are you looking for a good servant? I mean, I’m not the typical troll. Seriously, I’m little and don’t take up much space. I can also act, cook and watch your back as much as possible. Figured I’d throw all of that out there since I’m in the market for a master you know.”
“Wow, not sure if a troll is what I’m looking for but that’s one hell of story Are you really a…?”
“Look, Dam replied, I’m about to lose my mind standing like a stiff on this shelf eight hours a day. How bout’ you buy me, take me home and I will be the best servant and confidant you ever had.”
“Mm-all right, I said. But look, you’ve got to ride in my backpack and stay quiet okay. Some people already think I’m nuts.”
Arriving home, I gave Dam his first assignment. Pointing to a door that led to the crawl space underneath my apartment, I said, “find out who’s making the noises.”
Away he went, dancing down the hall singing troll tunes as I closed the door.
Ten minutes later, Dam greeted me with five trolls.
“Whoa! Good job, I said!”
“These guys are like me, Dam said. They just want to find a master. How bout’ we all do some troll shots and celebrate eh’!”
After an hour of intense partying with Dam and the five other trolls, my eyes rolled back in my head and I fell asleep on the couch. But, when I awoke the next morning there was complete silence. I called for Dam and looked for him everywhere, but there was no answer-nothing. Dam and the other five trolls had disappeared. I called the trolls store and told them what happened, hoping that maybe someone knew something. But, there was dead silence on the other end. Then the lady said, “Oh-My-God! Please tell me you didn’t drink with the trolls-did you? Did you?
“Well…yeah, we did troll shots, I said.”
“Oh, let me guess, all of your food and alcohol is gone right?”
“Yep, I said. They took all of the bunny stew, everything in the mini bar and a roll of cash.”
“Well, you know now the lady said, bunny stew and troll shots is their favorite but, they’ll show up here looking for employment after all their money is gone and the drunkenness wears off, that’s how the trolls roll. Hey, look, I’m really sorry about what happened, just come back in and we’ll set you up with another troll more to your liking okay.”
“Dam troll, no thanks, I liked it better just hearing voices. Besides, I’ve got to make another batch of Bunny Stew.”
A “MUST SEE”! Take a short drive from Colorado Springs to the rolling hills of the Paint Mines in Calhan, Colorado for a relaxing day trip. Within a few minutes hiking along easy designated trails, colorful shapes will emerge one-by-one like a baby Grand Canyon in the Colorado prairie.
From the parking area, there’s approximately four miles of “easy” hiking trails to the Paint Mines. We allowed about two hours for our roundtrip visit and was more than enough time to see what we came for. Note: Visitors are advised to stay on the designated hiking trails at all times to protect the natural wonders of these fragile spires and hoodoos in the Paint Mines Interpretive Park.
Relentless wind and water from “freeze thaw” conditions has created the spires, hoodoos and terraced layers of colorful clay and sand that you’ll see.
For the past 55 million years, The Paint Mines has been a work in progress.
American Indians used this land for hunting as well utilizing the local clays to build pots and ceremonial paint.
Directions: About 30 minutes from Colorado Springs, travel to the end of the town of Calhan via Hwy 24 and turn right on Yoder Rd and follow signs.
Park Hours: Dawn to Dusk
Note: There’s restroom facilities however, bring your own water and or food. The nearest store for consumables is several miles away in Calhan. It is recommended to check the local weather forecast and dress accordingly since there are sometimes constant winds at the Paint Mines.
Motor vehicles, pets and horses, alcoholic beverages and glass containers, discharge of guns as well as removing any plant, animal or rock life is strictly prohibited.
CAUTION: WATCH FOR STORMS!