Oltmans: A pause for thanks

This last weekend I dodged raindrops to stand on the dock at Lakeside Lodge and enjoy this truly unique place. While my trusty stubby-legged sidekick has joined me on hikes through the Winds, overlooking the majesty of places like Sacred Rim, my copilot enjoyed this most recent view from the safety of his backpack.

You’ve most likely seen us trotting around town over the past 18 months. We’ve taken those walks to enjoy this wonder place a little more each day. Well, I do that; he takes them to smell everything, potty on a few things and scarf down whatever garbage he can find before I’m able to pry it away. In any case, I find it important to soak those moments in because you’ll never know when they’re gone. Well, almost never.

This is my last edition of the Roundup. And it’s been a pleasure to serve as editor of this paper.

I came through Sublette County while I worked at the newspaper in Casper. Then those weekend getaways became my every day. The natural majesty, the warm welcomes, the heart-warming mix of pine, grilling meat and barley wafting in the air. I loved it and I’ve been lucky enough to call it home.

When I arrived, Sublette County was experiencing its spike in COVID-19 cases. A lifetime of events has happened since then. Through it all, amid rampant rumors spread on social media, the Roundup has been here every Friday to clear the air. For that, I’m proud.

I cradled my dog, grabbed all we had, and left all the friends and family we knew to ensure Pinedale and Sublette County had a vital local paper. For that decision came this paper’s first General Excellence award to bestow the Roundup as Wyoming’s “Best Small Weekly Newspaper.” In return I received an unforgettable experience and a feeling I’ll never shake.

The paper and the place have come to be intertwined to me. Maybe that’s an indictment on the hours and days I spent with a camera and notepad around town, but it is what it is. The few reprieves from work came in those dog walks. Open-aired moments to take pause (or paws, am I right?) to soak in this special place another time. That’s what this final contribution is. It’s a final deep breath among turbulence to thank you, the readers and the community, for supporting your local paper. The pleasure has been all mine.