Typically, when my morning alarm sounds, I pry one sleepy eye open and grudgingly reach for the snooze – sometimes more than once; occasionally more than twice. This is my dreamy state of denial set to autopilot. The sheer will to get my ass out of bed just isn’t there on more days than I care to admit, especially when I expect the day to be filled with work, emails to lawyers, caring for mom, or preparing for school.
It’s strange how these things suddenly change when you realize that you don’t have to agonize over the morning commute, what to wear, or what reports might be due to the boss first thing in the morning. Trust me when I say that when you stop worrying about whether or not work is going to burn down in your absence (and believe me, it won’t), the changes one undergoes while away are downright palpable. Time slows. Anxiety takes a header. Stress becomes a distant, fading memory. It truly is as if you don’t have a care in the world. Suddenly and almost inexplicably, the world around you is framed in a completely and utterly different light.
The same can be said for the stark contrast between the almost surreal flat sprawl of Western New York & Buffalo to that of the lush, rolling hills, mountains, and streams of Northwestern Vermont, which is where I spent eight blissful days away from it all.
Each morning I’d get out of bed, stumble to the coffee maker, and then head outside with camera in tow. When you’re greeted each morning with a beautiful, often dramatic panorama of the mountains, you simply have to take pictures because you want the moment to last; you can’t let the memory of it fade. You just want to sit and stare as the clouds roll over the mountains in the distance; you savor the feel the wooden deck underfoot, the smell of fresh maple sausage cooking in the kitchen, you want to memorize the feel the sun on your skin. This is not a dream and I’m thankful for it.
Afternoons are carefree and open-ended, often spent on hiking trails to find elusive, breathtaking waterfalls or you may find yourself amidst wildflowers and ferns on the lookout for moose or bear. The air is as clean and crisp as the streams trickling down from the mountains. Small towns and villages with covered bridges and quaint general stores await your daily expeditions and the people you encounter greet you with a warm, genuine smile.
Evenings are spent in laughter with good friends over delicious, exotic meals and subsequent thirsts quenched with all manner of refreshing ciders and beer, ranging from Woodchuck’s uplifting Limited Release Summer Cider to Long Trail’s Brewmaster Series Double IPA in 22 intensely sensual ounces. Suddenly, amidst all this revelry, you realize that you don’t seem to recognize yourself anymore. This isn’t the everyday you that you left behind – or perhaps, this is just the you that is often buried under the pile of inconsequential drudgery of daily life.
As my week away drew to a close and the car found itself suddenly and determinedly pointed westward toward Buffalo, I found myself in an unwavering, yet peaceful place which will linger for many weeks to come.
All my thanks to my friends at Moose Meadow Lodge, the Town of Waterbury, the beautiful State of Vermont, and my ‘Boo’ for a truly memorable and relaxing vacation.
[techtags:SUMMER, VACATION, VERMONT, LONG TRAIL, WOODCHUCK CIDER]