Wednesday, January 05, 2005

Echo in the woods...

Since beginning to plan my class yesterday... I have called Amtrak, calculated gas costs for a 2,500 mile trip, sought out plane ticket prices, daydreamed about a summer trip to Canada, and searched for travel grants. This is not good. I am inspired! I think I picked out the right topic to revolve the class around-- travel. Pico Iyer's Best American Travel Writing 2004 was a good find. Today I traveled to Patagonia in search of a favorite spot, the West Coast on an eventless family vacation, and visited the tundra, cliffs, and pine forests of Nova Scotia. Good book.
And believe it or not, I'm getting things done. I have the first 3 weeks planned, my syllabus finished (and on the web), and my first assignment written: Why do you travel?... inspired by Pico Iyer's "Why We Travel", a wonderful essay written in 2000.
When Vinny came home I didn't even look up. Lost in space...writing in my journal. It's been a long time since writing has taken me that far away. And it felt good. I eventually returned to greet my husband and serve up some nice minestrone soup... like a good wife (from a can).
But all this traveling, writing, and hot soup made me tired... so I took a nap. I just woke up now... right when I should be going to bed (and maybe I will). The wolfie is asleep downstairs. Safely behind closed doors, away from the cats. It is -26 degrees out there. It's been a cold week. Tasha, you are wise to be in Hawaii right now. It got "warm" out today though (-1)... and so the dogs and I took a walk in the ice and sun. The dogs barked the whole way because they are stir-crazy. I threw snow at them and was yelling too. The neighbors must think we are crazy. Well, yes-- we are. That is why we live out here in the sticks... where the only thing people hear is our echo. We'll have to change our ways if we become city dwellers. Either that or spend lots of time in the state forests. That is one thing I like about living here in this cold tundra forest... the land. There is always somewhere to go to find nature and solitude. I remember when I lived in Madison, WI how I missed the secret places of home. Wisconsin is mostly farmland. No place for dogs and crazy people to yell and bark and run around in the woods without leashes. That's part of the reason I moved back here-- well, that, and sheer misfortune. In many ways a very fortunate misfortune. And for all my dreaming, I must admit, I do love it here... and there is no where else in the world I would rather live. Even if it is DAMN COLD!

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