A couple of weeks ago, I lamented leaving the Adirondacks on a journey through them to Montreal. The pristine wildernesses left such an impression upon me. Like a chance encounter between destined lovers who meet each other for the first time as they are both en route to continents in opposite hemispheres, the vision settled into my mind and took root. It has changed me somehow, and my mind has been almost recklessly calculating how to get back there, how soon I can be there again, and what I can do to prevent us having to be separated for long stretches of time.
Luckily, my partner is an experienced back-country trekker who is more at home in a tent than she is our apartment. And, so, it took zero art of persuasion to convince her that we should plan a week-long expedition into the heart of the West Canada Lakes Wilderness area.
Now, I’m your average car-camper. For me, camping generally means slugging along a host of comforts and half a cupboard of food that I can engineer into a fabulous “foodie” cooking experience using the rarely employed technology of an open fire. Clothes for every weather, paint and canvas in case I feel like getting creative in the woods, two pairs of flip-flops (one for inside the tent; one for outside), travel scrabble set, cumfy pillow, and the ever important good coffee-making paraphernalia.
Needless to say, I’ve had to practice letting go. We’ll be eating pre-packaged, freeze-dried meals, and packing in one extra set of ultra-lite clothing. Instant coffee and survival gear. Every single item that goes in our packs must be set before the judge and jury of my experienced back-packer, and it would be a grand understatement to claim that she is a vigilant guard of weight management.
At first, letting go was a little difficult: “What do you mean, I can’t pack every kind of snack I think I might have the urge to chomp on?” “What do you mean, I can’t pack four pairs of jeans?” “What do you mean I’ll not be able to eat fresh fruit and veggies for a week?” But, as we peel away all the extras, one by one, and as I settle my mind into being comfortable with only the barest of necessities, I find myself actually becoming happier and happier.
All of these little cravings add up– so much so, that if I weren’t willing to work loose their stranglehold on me (and one or two moments certainly popped up in which my willingness evaporated), I would miss out on the opportunity to be where my soul finds absolute respite and harmony.
Thank you, Katie, for helping to free me a little bit at a time. Adirondacks, here we come!!