Stone by stone

I turned 39 earlier this month, and I got to mark the occasion in Colorado with family and one of my best friends. The trip also led to one of the wildest discoveries.

Y’all, did you know there is a castle in Colorado?

Sitting just off the highway about 30 minutes east of Westcliffe, Bishop Castle has been a family building project for over 50 years. Depending on your sensitivity to heights and building codes, it is either – or maybe all-at-once – an incomprehensible, astounding example of hand craftsmanship or a complete death trap. It is, unquestionably, a passion project that has touched a lot of lives. 

This is a tourist destination, but there are plenty of giant, handwritten signs that greet guests with many warnings. This is a structure you visit at your own risk, and if you feel like risking it all, you can make it to the top of this thing. 

Do you see those railings and catwalks? We did not make it near the top of this thing. But we left inspired. 

Jim Bishop, the Bishop patriarch, started building a cabin in the 1960s and realized he was actually building a castle by 1972. It is still a construction site five decades later. And it’s a testament to all of us out here who are willing to try making something their own special way. 

If Bishop had just stopped building when he had his 1-bedroom cabin, he and his family probably would have enjoyed it. Instead, he and his family have created something – and continue to create something – that people from all over the world (and even Georgia) can visit and gawk at and enjoy. 

Isn’t that what the entrepreneurial spirit is all about? The Bishops’ journey reminds me of people who have built companies from nothing but a wild idea. In the thinnest of threads, that’s what we’re doing here.

We’re closing in on the three-year anniversary of my decision to go out and make something out of the ideas I had, and this month marks two years Johnathan and I have been in business. All we had were ideas and our gumption and a passion for telling great stories. 

There are plenty more of those to tell, and we’re thankful to tell them. Who knows what the Trestle Collective can be, but it feels like it could be a great decades-long project that can touch more clients and people than I’ve imagined. 

So, we’re going to keep stacking these stones. Who knows, maybe we’ve been building a castle all along.

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