Sometimes I Miss Country Living

August 22, 2012

Dear Diary

For all its rickety-ness and drafts, I like my old house and I have one of the finest yards in town. But sometimes I remember living in the “sticks,” and I miss it. I spent a number of years in the Catskill area as a youth, REAL down-to-earth living, and my thoughts usually turn to those days in the autumn.


We used to get up early, right after dawn, and watch the morning mist roll off the furry caps of the hills. In the spring and summer, the hills were thick with bright green pines and red oaks and sugar maples. There is nothing like the smell of fresh pine resin dripping from weathered evergreen trunks while the wind blows through their needles with a loud whoosh. Nothing like it. In the summer, wild blueberries grew among the rusty pine needles on the forest floor. They were so sweet to pick and eat fresh off the bushes, the little berries bursting in our mouths with a delightful pop. I felt like little Heidi in Johanna Spyri’s book. It was beautiful, invigorating country.

In the autumn when temperatures dipped, the maples and oaks burst ablaze with reds and oranges and yellows. The pine trees stubbornly refused to change their stiff green clothes and stood soberly at attention among the fluffy, giddy leaf changers.

We’d sit out on the patio, watching the show, shivering with the cooler mountain air, cradling our steaming cups of coffee. Our favorite activity of the day was to watch the rising sun burn off the mountains’ morning mist. Luminous tendrils of the departing mist always curled around the fingers of the oak tree leaves before retreating back into the sky, like a mother reluctantly loosening her grip on her child’s hand. Sometimes the cloud would break into individual little tufts, boasting brightly of their newfound independence. But soon, they too disappeared with the burning sun.

In this region of southern New York State, it’s a little more temperate, so summer always tries to edge back after a time, elbowing autumn for a final hurrah. The trees would glisten with the shimmering heat, as if they were startled awake, roused from that semi-unconscious state before deep sleep comes.

Autumn Adirondacks 1

But it was temporary. The Indian summer faked us out and it was just a matter of time before autumn came back more ferocious than ever. Strong winds would always rise up about this time in the season, as if autumn was angry that it had been kicked out of its proper domain. Its indignation was bittersweet, because while we loved the cooler, crisper air, the vigorous winds blew all the leaves off the trees and destroyed what was beautiful about autumn.

While I am OK with living in town and have done so for nearly 30 years, there are some things about town life to which I will never adapt. The smells of burnt toast and bacon rising from the neighbor’s home. The cacophony of motorcycles that cloud the streets with their noise pollution. Not being able to see the stars at night. The sound of a dozen lawn mowers on a Sunday morning.

And as I will soon enter the autumn of my own life, I am more eager to seek those little moments of tranquility and contemplation. I am less quick to jump to conclusions, less quick to busy my mind with a million tasks. I have peace with God. I am less likely to hustle and bustle about, and am more content to watch His wonderful works.

Autumn makes me want to walk through a wooded path and enjoy the wonders of creation. Just to rest. I think it’s time for a little vacation, don’t you? ๐Ÿ˜‰

Potato Hill Rd Adirondacks 2

Tis so sweet to trust in Jesus
Just to take Him at His word
Just to rest upon His promise
Just to know, Thus saith the Lord.

Jesus! Jesus! How I trust Thee
How I’ve proved Thee over and over
Jesus, Jesus, precious Jesus
Oh, for grace to trust Him more.

Yes, โ€™tis sweet to trust in Jesus,
Just from sin and self to cease;
Just from Jesus simply taking
Life and rest, and joy and peace.

Iโ€™m so glad I learned to trust Thee,
Precious Jesus, Savior, Friend;
And I know that Thou art with me,
Will be with me to the end.

Jesus! Jesus! How I trust Thee
How I’ve proved Thee over and over
Jesus, Jesus, precious Jesus
Oh, for grace to trust Him more.


2 Responses to “Sometimes I Miss Country Living”

  1. Chuck Says:

    I’m left with feelings of nostalgia and strong desire to take a long walk in the woods. ๐Ÿ™‚

  2. lin Says:

    I’ve never lived in the country, but we spend our vacations out in the open, away from anything “city.”

    I love how the mornings start so slow–how it takes forever for the clouds to burn off and the sun to shine. I love how things are quieter, smell better, and you can find peace within and outside of yourself. I can’t begin to imagine living like that all the time.