Monday, September 04, 2006
I miss the sky
I miss the sky. Not being able to see the stars in the city is like not being able to see my feet when I was pregnant. I knew they were there, but part of my body was missing.
I feel the most whole when walking on a trail in the mountains, or by a river in Iowa. The sound of wind blowing through the leaves and tall grasses is more beautiful than any song I've ever heard. And when I haven't visited the natural world in months, I start to get jittery, like I've had twelve cups of coffee on an empty stomach.
We are a mile and a half from the ocean. But it's not the same. I love the sea and it fills me up on another level. But I need the absence of other people, a trail that goes on forever, wandering creeks, birds dancing on branches. And quiet. Oh, I miss quiet. It is the first thing I notice about Iowa. Waking up at my parents house without the noise of the fruit wagon that plays, "La Cucaracha," the corn guy with his horn, the ice cream truck, the children yelling, cars honking, garbage trucks dumping bins outside the window at 7am - Iowa is just hushhhhhh.
But I've also become a mountain girl. Hiking is an adventure in the simplest form. It is the world opening up for you to look inside. No walk through the mountains will ever be the same as the next. No amusement park, shopping mall, even theatre experience can compare to walking through wildflowers, over fallen branches, finding seashells twenty miles from the ocean. It is my church, my refuge, my shelter from the city. But the sky, I miss the most. Because it reminds me that this world is bigger than me. It doesn't care about the little things, or is bothered by traffic and angry people. It just sits up there, without an opinion or agenda. It just is.