Tomorrow I head out on vacation to the woods of upstate New York. I remember the first time my sisters and I joined my stepmother’s family at their Adirondack “camp” when I was 11. We flew from the hot stickiness of New Orleans summer to cool Brulington, Vermont, rode a ferry across Lake Champlain, drove 2 hours to Saranac Lake, and then tumbled for half an hour on a gravel road. That final road seemed endless, but thrilling. The familiar was gone, and we spent two weeks finding our way on this new turf, with evergreens rather than oaks, evenings spent on a porch rather than air conditioned living room, and cousins that said “wicked” instead of “y’all.” These summer trips to Saranac uncovered in me a love of the woods and led me to move to Vermont for college and then travel across the country to settle in Seattle.
The writer Rebecca Stolnit’s book “A Field Guide to Getting Lost” reminds me why many of us love to travel. She quotes the philosopher Meno: “How will you go about finding that thing the nature of which is totally unknown to you.” We find ourselves by getting lost. We find our roots by becoming uprooted.
Tomorrow I will tumble down that road with the same thrill. And I will smile deep within, knowing that these woods took me home, home to mySelf.
What path will you choose this month? How will you go about finding that thing the nature of which is totally unknown to you? Happy Trails!
Posted by: Anne Phyfe