I loved being in the mountains and would spend hours exploring the surrounding areas, the trees, the meadows, climbing, picking up rocks I was sure were arrowheads (and btw some were). And, this is going to sound totally dorky but one of my favorite things to do, at least when we were fishing, was to walk around the lake’s perimeter as far as I could. Some I could get all the way around and others not so much. The entire walk with my head down, intently combing the water’s edge, searching for a treasure which might have floated up or broke off from previous fisherman. Oh, my collection of bubbles, lures and just fishing line was pretty impressive and you’d be jealous if you saw it ;-)
Becoming an adult, meeting so many more people from other places, it struck me as odd when they would talk about how much being around the water meant to them meaning the ocean. It took me awhile to make the connection when folks said “the water” the meant the ocean. At first I would be like, in my head, “which water? Lake? River? What?” I couldn’t grasp how anyone could prefer to be where you basically look out to wide open space over being in the green protective canopy of a Huntington Canyon. It wasn’t because I hadn’t been to the ocean, I’ve been to many different oceans. I just didn’t “get it”. A side note here, does anyone besides me think it’s interesting how different parts of the country call the land right before the water a different name? The west - the beach, in the east - the shore, and the gulf area– the coast.
Recently on a trip to a beach house in Oregon, I think I “got it”, or at least part of it. It was so serene. The sound of the waves crashing on the beach blocked out the useless chatter in my head. The sight of the infinite waves rhythmically coming to the beach was both hypnotic and calming. The smell of the salt air and sound of the seagulls rivaled the smell of the trees and sounds of the birds chirping in the mountains of Utah.
And my epiphany, which seems to be a common theme for me these days, what I like the most about both of these places, the walking on the beach, the walking around the lake, the exploring the water’s edge for fishing paraphernalia, the exploring the sand for sea shells, it’s all a sort of meditation. Only there, on vacation, engulfed by the beauty of the mountains or the ocean, it happens naturally. You don’t have to plan it or think about it, it just is. It’s relaxing, it’s comforting and it’s healing.
So, would I choose a beach house on the sea over a cabin in the middle of the trees … sometimes, but not always!
P.S. What about you? Tree or Sea? and Why?