Leaving what I love.
Driving home. Headlights in the snow. Owl and elk, coyote tracks and a snowshoe hare. Only a dusting. Perhaps it will be gone tomorrow.
We leave town. Down past Airport Corner. I will see no vehicle from here on up to home. Even Freemon’s Ranch is still and silent for the season.
As if eyes almost closed. We squint through snow shooting towards the windshield, whipping up and over at just the last minute. A blinding tunnel vision.
It will not last. We know. By the time we reach the Reservoir, the sky is an even white, like a bed sheet draped over my head, tucking me in for the season.
This year is different. Every year is. I cling to the early winter because it is all I have now. Mid winter will take us south. Far south. South of the Equator. South America. Where the sun will shine north of us.
I never thought we would be “Endless Summer” season travelers when Winter is what we’ve lived for. But who can resist an adventure? And a big one lies ahead. I can not say no. We will go. Four months in Patagonia. It is summer there. We will leave deep winter, dressed in long johns and parkas and heavy boots and riding on the back of my husband’s snowmobile with our dog balanced between us. Somewhere on the drive to the airport perhaps we’ll slowly strip. Leave the layers behind. Go lightweight. Hawaiian shirts and flip flops. Not really my style. I think I’ll keep the Levi’s and cowboy boots and sweat it out if need be.
I will say farewell to my mountain for winter. Close up our home, farm out the house plants, dig my nose deep into the hair of my horses as we bring them to lower ground. One last whiff of their sweet smell, each one of which I am so familiar I could identify him or her blindfolded by scent alone.
And the twist to this story: it’s all for the sake of writing. Part of becoming a writer, or rather, expanding, evolving… A chance to complete another story. A good one at that. I’ll save the details for another time.
There’s more to it than that. There always is to every tale, isn’t there? And this one won’t end otherwise. In this case, there is, “For the sake of adventure.”
Because life is too short for Woulda, Coulda and Shoulda. I’d rather stick with, “Sure, I’ll give it a try.”