There is something to be said about the vast never-endedness of the ocean. The soft gentle lapping of hte waves. The calm. The quiet. The meditative peace. There really is nothing that quite compares to the landscape of the blue seas..endless skies and a horizon that is so distant it all but disappears.
But - for me - it's the mountains that I love. Their lush green in summer. Their winter white. The blaze of indescribable autumn color. Their voluptous curves. Their twists and turns and hidden valleys. How it is so easy to disappear..to get lost..to see without actually being seen.
One hour east - and I'm met with endless sand and sea. One hour north or west - and I'm free.
Perhaps it has to do with from where I began. The beaches that I knew and loved - were hidden oasis. They were found lost in and among the surrounding hills and whispering tall pines. Lakes were clean and cold and fresh. There was a sense of privacy..of propriety..of even - perhaps - illicit secrecy. Anything that happened there - stayed right there. Never any witnesses...nor anyone who might show and tell.
Many a hot summer morning found us down at a lake. Thrilled at just being - alive and aware - we'd strip ourselves bare. We'd soap up our bodies..squeeze shampoo in our hair. Filled with youthful exuberance all we'd submerge ourselves into the dark icey coolness...emerging all clean and squeaky. Because it was fun. Because we were young. Because there was no one else there.
Many a cold winter day found us traversing the mountain slopes. Skiing and sledding and whatever other sport winter offered.
And autumns we were up hiking in the splendor.
There is something indescribable about the richness of the soil..the freshness of the air. There is something about the unexpected surprise as the landscape rolls itself out..unfolds. Never repeating itself twice. The rambling farms. The roaming cows. The quaint villages. So simple. So unassuming. So unaware.
Lucky - I am - to live where I do. To have both - the ocean and mountains - within such easy access and reach. Lucky - for sure.
But given a choice - on any day..in any season..in any year - it's to the mountains I would go. It's there that the gournd feels solid beneath. It's there and within the comfort of its warm and tender..gentle and soft embrace. It's there - were I feel peace..and quiet..and home.