Sunday, June 15, 2014

Gift from the Mountains

Aahhh, vacation -- a time during the year for which we all yearn. This year, I got to experience a real, grown-up vacation with just my husband. No kids, no amusement parks, no entertaining someone else, just the two of us enjoying peace and quiet for a solid week. 

We RVed (noun becomes a verb, sort of like "Google it!") to North Carolina and set up camp in a lovely community of cabins, houses and RVs in Linville. This is a quiet place filled with mainly retired couples, but families with children vacation here also.

This picture is from the rainy window of the RV. I think that's the tip of Grandfather Mountain in the background.

A "selfie" with my husband after we unloaded the RV.

What's the best thing about being here? The cool temperature entices a visitor to be outside all the time. Yesterday, I sat outside to read and promptly fell asleep. I awoke at 4:00 pm, freezing. The temperature was 64 degrees. From a person living in hot, sunny, humid Florida, experiencing this in the middle of June is fantastic!

Everyone here is so friendly. We have met our neighbors and other people down the street. A couple on the corner helped us back the RV into its spot. We have met more people in this neighborhood than in our neighborhood at home. Richard says it's because here, people are outside, not inside soaking up air conditioning. He might be right.

Another plus of being here is the beautiful vegetation. Everything is so green and lush. My favorite plant here is hostas. Some are variegated and others not; some are small and others are huge. There are also rhododendrons, daylillies, and wild fern. Everywhere I look, there's a beautiful plant to see.

A variegated hostas
This hostas is 5 feet in diameter!

The rhododendrons hide the RV.

I haven't seen much wildlife yet, but I think it's because there are so many people. The birds sing all day, and little chipmunks scurry around. I've got my eye out for a bear which I hope will be located a far distance from me. 

I'm enjoying every minute of this vacation and trying to recharge my energy and soul, much like a book I read a long time ago. 

When my children were little, someone suggested I read Gift from the Sea by Anne Morrow Lindbergh. If you aren’t familiar with it, the book was written by Charles Lindbergh’s wife, Anne, in 1955. For several years, she left her four kids and husband at home in New Jersey and travelled to Florida to stay for two weeks in a cabin on the beach by herself. BY HERSELF.  

In the book, she tells how the sea clears her mind and helps her refocus on what's important. She writes that modern women have too much that threaten to overwhelm us, too many modern-day gadgets that are supposed to simplify our life but instead make it more complicated. She instructs us that “Women need solitude in order to find again the true essence of themselves.” The trips to the sea allowed Lindbergh to do that.

Like the sea, these beautiful mountains of North Carolina have gifts to offer. I'm accepting all that I can during my too-short vacation.