This weekend I answered the call of the country. If you know me you will know that is a very unusual statement for me to make. I am not a nature person. I lived in a house with an acre of land once and happily traded it in for a city house with no land because I could not be bothered to deal with nature. However, as much as I love the excitement and energy of the city there are times when the great outdoors beckon. Twice a year usually once in the dead of winter and at last once in heat of summer I start going stir crazy in the city. I yearn for the openness, greeness, slowness of the countryside. The body and mind need to be refreshed. My longing for the country was satisfied this weekend by taking a trip to Starved Rock State Park, a national park 100 miles outside of Chicago.
The trees in the park were tall, the abundant rain this summer had made the park lush. One can breath deep with so much vegetation around. The leaves from the tall trees formed a canopy that blocked the sky. The roots of the ancient trees had dug deep, protruding from the earth like viens on a bony hand.
There is a constant background noise of water, either trickling from a small waterfall, gushing from a large waterfall or flowing along a stream.
In the 85 degree heat and over 70% humidity we trudged onwards along wooden pathways, up wooden stairs and over wooden bridges on and on, mile after mile.
Every now and then we would stop to enjoy the view.
The park is so big the path never ends but at some point – how can I say this – I am done, we are all done. Even though it is only 4pm and there is still plenty of daylight left. I start feeling like I did when I had the big house with an acre of land, enough already. I had a great time- I like this hiking on the weekend thing- but it is time to go home. We forgo the hotel we had booked for the night and decide to go back to Chicago instead. Our bodies ached, our clothes were wet with sweat. Our day hiking had accomplished it’s mission the mind was cleansed the body was reinvigorated, we were ready for the week ahead.
I hope you all have wonderful plans this summer and find time to be outside as much as possible enjoying mother nature come rain or shine.