Friends from the city came out to spend the long weekend with us. Every once in awhile, they like to leave the noise and pressures of their busy city lives behind and relax in the quiet solitude that rural living offers. Late Saturday afternoon after sitting around and visiting for several hours, we decided to go for a walk. Supper was delayed as we ended up walking out to the lake north of town and exploring the newly upgraded nature trail that runs along it’s edge. That evening, our next door neighbours joined us as we relaxed by our backyard firepit and the city dwellers exclaimed over the myriad of stars stretched across the night sky above us.
Yesterday took us out into the wide open spaces again as we fulfilled one of my long time desires. Two of the fields that Richard and I farm sit at the top of a bluff with an amazing view. Every spring and fall as I’ve come to the edge of those fields and enjoyed the vista spread out below, I’ve dreamed of hiking up from the bottom. After spending the morning in church and returning home for lunch, we set off to do just that. It turned out to be a much easier hike than we anticipated.
As we walked across the bottom pastureland and made our way up the hillside, what looked like nothing more than grass from the distance became a wide variety of plants including low lying junipers, colourful wildflowers and even tiny cactus. A deer bounded away as we came close and we saw the remains of a couple of others who didn’t make it through the harsh winter, their bones picked clean by hungry predators.
I love cities. I spent my teenage years in Vancouver and went to university in Calgary. I’ve walked the streets of Toronto, Montreal, Tokyo, Seoul and Hong Kong but I also love coming home to the wide open spaces and a quieter way of living. As our friends go home today, I hope they’ve been refreshed.