When I was a little girl most vacations were camping trips. The smell of that old green canvas tent, a roaring campfire and the forest aroma's, were my fondest memories as a child. Sadly the tent was upgraded to a confining, hot motor home, but the best parts of camping remained. Swimming, smores, campfires, fishing, pine cone gathering and the smell of the trees never stopped calling me back to the mountains.
Camping, as I became an adult, remained a treat reserved for vacations and long weekends. I lived and raised my girl's in the suburbs while commuting to big cities for work, until I was thirty five. Fast food was easier on soccer nights and shopping at the malls was a fun weekend activity. I usually lived pay check to pay check always needing something to make life more convenient. We had a nice house two miles from a sewage plant and 5 miles from a tiny airport. On certain breezy days you could smell the sewage and the summer air shows would rattle the windows. Traffic, rushing around and money was my life for 35 years.
When my ALS was starting to become a bigger part of my daily struggle and being already retired, I kept asking myself is this really where I want to be? I remembered my beloved mountains but knew snow in the winter for a disabled, single mom would not be in the cards. Instead I picked up and moved my girls to the foothills. A country life, a little snow and mountain views. We ate better, spent less and became members of a small community where we knew many of the faces around us. We didn't need to lock everything up tight and felt safe and happier.
Meeting Dave and getting married, as the children were leaving home, was a wonderful gift. We took a leap of faith together and bought a house in the mountains 5 minutes from a lake. When I'm there I can smell the pines, hear the breeze blowing through the cedars and I can even smell the camper's campfires at the lake. I'm living my life as one big vacation and I'm very thankful to have been given this gift. City life can be a treat to visit for a movie experience, a play, dinner or a cup of coffee at Starbucks. Yet country life has brought me full circle and really fits the new me.