Reader profile: Crystal Noland

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Crystal Noland has lived in Craig on and off for 26 years. She has no desire to experience the "off" again.
"I'm going to be here forever," she said. "I like Craig. I like the people. I choose to live here.
Noland came to Craig from Washington. At first, she moved back and forthm constantly chasing a better job. Sixteen years ago, she decided Craig was all she needed.
"It was a quiet little town that's good for growing up in," she said. "It sounds funny now, but there were less drugs in Craig than other places."
Here she raised four children, now ages 22, 23, 26 and 28. The three youngest live in Craig.
Noland's face is seen so regularly at the Golden Cavvy that the regulars notice when she's gone. She's worked there for the past eight years doing "a little bit of everything."
"I do everything but the dishes," she said. "I draw the line at dishes. I'll run a load now and then, but I won't do a shift."
Though there have been times when she thought of moving on, eight years at the same place makes Noland feel secure, and secure is how she likes to feel.
During her little free time, Noland likes to fish and play in the river. It's a place that intimidated her at first. When a 19-year-old Noland came to Craig, she didn't know how to swim and wouldn't have swam in such a murky looking river anyway.
"I was used cold water that you to could see clear to the bottom of," she said. "When I first saw the Yampa I was shocked people swam in it. I wasn't sure that water was safe."
She learned to swim in a pool and now loves to hang out at the Yampa.
"I'm in it all the time now," she said. "We swim a little and we fish a little."

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