When we glance out of our office windows, taking a break from toiling at our desks, we are enjoying the nicest views in Tumbler Ridge.

It is a pleasant experience indeed to look out over the Roman Walkway as the leaves change colour, and students stroll down to the high school using the path.

How lucky to live in such a beautiful place.

I have moved at least 15 times, never staying longer than three years in anywhere, yet I have been here since 1991, settling in happily as so many of my fellow residents have.

The most beguiling thing about our town is that it is only 25 years old, and we all are new to the community, if only be degree. In 50 years family names will be handed down, and we will say things like ?oh, my grandparents settled the place in the early days?.

It is very much like the wagon trains in the 1800?s moving across the plains.

Occasionally a settler and his family would stop (and stay) at the bend of a river perhaps.

They might build a small house, a barn, and in time sell goods and services to other travellers moving down the trail.

Others would end their journey here and there you would have it – a new town being born!

Wether it be mining or homesteading, being part of the evolution of a new community is a once in a lifetime experience.

In our area coal is king, and it allows us to create a decent life for our families.

Coal mining has a tiny footprint on the landscape, and the bonds that are posted by mining companies to ensure that the landscape is returned to its original pristine condition may be overlooked by those anxious about environmental impacts.

There is room for all of us?coal, dinosaurs, the wilderness, and the wildlife. All that is really needed is a common vision, a respect for the land, and the willingness to do our best.