April 14, 2011
Northwoods Home Coming
Homecoming ... When thinking about this word my first thought is back to high schools days of dances, football and basketball games. The next thought though is the new book, Simon Bourgin An Odyssey That Began in Ely which I read during our road trip home this past week. The book is a quick and marvelous read: about the life of Simon. Home town Ely boy whose life took him to the far flung corners of the world which were in his day not a computer stroke away. Now at the more fragile age of 96 he has returned to Ely, where the smell of pine can easily be found on this April day. Simon too, has come home.
Coming home for us is always an annual event being indulged the option of two homes, one for the short three months of extreme winter and then Burntside the rest of the year. Burntside is home in the truest sense of the word as life seems to be at its most real; filled with a sensualness that is the ever present gift from Mother Nature.
Today began as a warm and sun-filled morning, a reason to wait for that first cup of coffee and take a walk outdoors. The smell in the air is crisp and fresh, a pureness that seems most present here. The light throws shadows enunciating the green leaves of daffodils to come poking through the brown leafy mulch, calling attention to the purple crocus blooms and swelling lilac buds against the brown of the leafless woods.
If your eyes were closed you still would sense your approach to the lake. Each step is cooler and cooler. Leaving the sunlight and rounding the bend into the shade, hands reach toward the warmth of pockets ... the air is crisp with a pureness one cannot deny. Then the lake appears: frozen still, white with messy slush in places along the shore; but locked in tight to winter cold. The only sound comes from the chickadees and then a crow.
Amidst the silence and quiet I knew I was home; ready to enjoy again the seasons of spring and summer. Soon others will follow this path and feel like they too, are once again back home to these treasured summer places on the lake.
Whether it is homecoming or coming home it feels wonderful.