We plan all year for our summer vacation in Canada. We talk about Grandview all winter long. Finally, it’s time to pack the car with stuff and the dogs and start out on the long drive. Prior to departure, I generally have some doubts. It would be so much easier just to stay home. But, with plans in place we push ahead. The road trip is an enjoyable change of pace. We arrive and it takes several days to decompress. Then a few more days to stop thinking about family, Hobe Sound, the house, my work, our garden. The list goes on . . . It’s difficult to let it all go. Insecurities and concerns creep in and roll around inside my head. Then one morning I wake up and, as if by magic, all I can think about it picking blueberries, or going kayaking. Maybe it’s a good day to take a walk in a yet unexplored part of the woods? What a relief to feel the magic of the place wash over me and clear out all the issues, doubts, problems, concerns . . .
We are here and now all we have to do is fall into the rhythm of the place. Is it important that by current standards this place is rather basic? Peter describes it as one click above camping. Yes, the carpeting is worn. The bath is in need of a face lift. The kitchen cabinets squeak. The screen door slams shut. The question is: what really matters? Would the cottage be a better place if it had granite counter tops and a gas range? Would air conditioning make a better cottage? Somehow, I think not.
As I have grown older, my reality has changed. My focus is very different. If the cottage had air conditioning I would not hear the surf on the rocks as I fall asleep at night. I would miss the loons call, or the crunch of gravel as a friend rolls up the drive. I do not believe I can make a better pizza in a new oven vs our vintage little sears model. Would it really be better if the ceiling were raised and if we had a barn or a garage??
Of course, all that would be nice as it’s nice to have a washer and a dryer, but at the end of the day, I would not change anything if by changing it I could not be here. Yes, it’s a simple place and it turns out that simple is very nice. There is real comfort in simple. Simple is another form of magic. It’s just not that easy to recognize, at first glance.