Sunday, January 11, 2009
Home :: Found
These Foothills are my Home.
I have always felt them welcome us when we return. Tim and I grew up in the shadow of these Foothills, their silhouette a sign that we had reached the end of a journey, whether it was down the freeway to the beach or returning from Africa, Australia or Oregon.
Along with the familiar rolling lines always comes the unmistakable scent of home. It is from the chaparral, the native bushes and plants that grow rampant over the foothills, shrouding them in light golden green brown that turns to a dusty dry dun color as the heat approaches.
The release of their unique scent is strong, and smells to me like instinct. I cannot descircbe it other than sweet and dry, smoky and somehow cleansing.
I have explored those Foothills since I was small; walks with my Mom, excursions on bike with my group of teenage guy friends, a night trip to view an abandoned coyote den with the boy that would become my husband.
Endless experiences that have accumulated so much depth I sometimes feel the hills are as intrinsically home to me as the structure that lives at its base.
We brought the boys up for their first home hike of 09, marveling at the way time changes them so quickly.
The short loop we have designated as walk-able for them is not very difficult anymore, the uphill no longer challenges their balance and the downhill is a source of delight when no hand holding will suffice, they must run down it themselves with full speed, shouting ‘More!’ before they even reach the bottom. The only reason it took a long time to do the loop was their insatiable need to pick up every rock in the path and throw it off.
Watching their ease and familiarity there strikes a chord in my heart. I want them to grow up in these Hills. I want them to feel welcomed and comforted and joyful in their exploration and discovery of the nuances. I want them to be there more than in front of a TV screen, have more time there gathering findings from Nature than from the aisles of a box store that promotes gathering of a different sort.
I want so much for my boys, but I think we are on the right start. I love giving them time and space to explore. I love the way we share what we love with them. They are already fascinated by the mountain bikers that scream by, by the animals we spot, by the smell of the chaparral.
I guess one finds home by learning of it from the time they are born. We find it by connecting. I hope you have found a place to call Home, one in the open, in the light and full of joy and discovery you might be able to share with your little ones. Home found.