Post written by Jim Drummond, President
This will be my last active week at Stockman Bank. I will begin vacation next week continuing through the first week of August when I will turn in my keys and officially become “retired”.
I don’t know if anyone noticed the colorful rainbow that we had after a short rainstorm a couple of weeks ago. It was a day that started with a bright blue sky in the morning and suddenly turned dark in the afternoon. Thunder roared and lightning flashed, and then it rained heavily for just a few minutes.
As quickly as it happened, the storm ended and the sun came out. The summer breeze smelled like moist earth as the sun quickly went to work to dry the droplets on leaves and lawns. Then in the east, as if by magic, a brilliant rainbow appeared.
Like all rainbows it was purple on the inner circle, then a band of blue, then green, and yellow, and orange and then an outer ring of red. The left side of the rainbow touched the mouth of Bridger Canyon, then proudly arched up and over the green hills of the eastern valley to curve back to earth at the base of Mount Ellis. The rainbow served as a picture frame for the valley and was just as spectacular, if not more so, than the picture.
When you get older, you look at things like rainbows and remember snippets of times gone by. As I looked at the rainbow in the east, my mind wandered to when I was a child. My mother was Irish, so when I was small and a rainbow appeared she insisted that the whole family rush to our old Nash car and head off on a family adventure.
Rainbow chasing was our adventure.
All those who are Irish, or part Irish, or believe that they’re Irish on St. Patty’s day, know that Leprechauns do exist. And leprechauns guard a pot of gold at the end of the rainbow that you may claim if you can get there before the rainbow fades away. So my parents would bundle us up in the car and off we would race to chase the rainbow.
Most often after a summer storm the rainbow appeared in the east, but sometimes to the north and sometimes to the south. We would race along paved roads, and gravel roads, and dirt trails and almost make it to the end of the rainbow…….but then the rainbow would move to the next hill and just out of reach. As children it didn’t really make much difference to us if it moved or faded away. The fun was being with our family and the adventure of the chase. Years later, when I was the adult with my own small boys, I taught them how to chase a rainbow.
For just a few years when the boys were little, they believed in the magic of a rainbow, and Leprechauns and the pot of gold. They never tired of chasing a rainbow when sunlight pushed dark clouds aside leaving hillsides sparkling and nature’s multi-colored arch in the sky. While chasing rainbows, and leprechauns, and a pot of gold, my boys were able to learn about each corner of our valley, and its people, and all of its beauty and charm.
Chasing a rainbow is much like a career. We start out searching for the pot of gold that we hope is at the end. For most there isn’t any real pot of gold. During our chase we experience some dark clouds, and thunder, and lightning. Still, we mostly enjoy blue skies and warm breezes. During our rainbow journey, if we remember to look at the world with the wonder of a child, we can see the brilliance of purple, and orange, and greens and reds and blues. We see the bright fields of waving grasslands, the shimmering leaves of trees, and rolling hills backstopped by majestic snow capped peaks.
We just need to remember to look.
As we chase after our pot of gold we can discover lands yet unseen and know the friendship and love of other rainbow chasers along the way. We learn that when the end of the rainbow has moved just out of reach, that a chaser must continue the journey and refuse to give up. And we must always have confidence that out there somewhere is our own pot of gold. Our pot of gold might not be coins, or ingots, or fine golden jewelry. Our pot of gold may simply be the friendships gained and experiences had while chasing our rainbow and making each day an adventure.
I have followed my rainbow in a banking career spanning 43 years. It has been quite a journey that was sometimes difficult, most often gratifying, and always an adventure. I don’t know what I could or would do differently. During that time I have never caught up to the end of a rainbow, or met a leprechaun, or found an actual pot of gold.
Nonetheless, thanks to each of you, I have found my own pot of gold at the end of my rainbow. It is the brilliant reds and blues and yellows and green colors of life. It is the land where we live, the people who have worked by my side, the friends and customers and community who have been so supportive, and the love of family.
It is in living each day fully while presented with challenges, and triumphs, and rewards that had nothing to do with golden coins.
I am proud of each of you, and proud of what we have accomplished. I have greatly enjoyed the mystery of our rainbow, and our chase, and the adventure of it all. I have found my reward at the end of my rainbow and it is far greater than any golden riches that I could ever hope to acquire.
My thanks to each of you for your friendship, your support, and for being part of a wonderful journey. I will miss all of you, but hopefully we will meet again in the bright sunlight that comes after a rainfall…. and as you each chase your rainbow and discover your own pot of gold.
And as the Irish would pray….
May you have all the happiness,
And luck that life can hold,
And at the end of all your rainbows,
May you find your pot of Gold.