We’ve been looking around for a parcel of land that will provide a little place to go camp, hike, stargaze, hang out and listen to birds and breezes… all for under $20,000 and within an hour of our house. High hopes much?? 🙂 So every now and then the hubster finds a couple of contenders and we head out on an adventure to find the listed property and decide if it’s worth keeping in the contenders column or if the description is highly creative.
Most of the time the places he finds are off a dirt road (always a good sign!) and often the map online doesn’t quite match the roads we have to travel. Today was one of those days. One of the properties had some breathtaking views, but we had to put the truck in 4WD and low gear to get up the road to reach it. While it would be a great place to hike, and there was a cleared area to pitch a tent, we’d really like to find something that we could invite friends to, and all of our friends don’t own 4WD vehicles. So, it’ll be on the “it’d perfect if…” list.
While we were walking the property I got a little melancholy, thinking about the land my grandparents owned. It was wooded, with some pasture where they raised cattle and grew a gorgeous big garden. The spring breaks I spent there were full of wildflowers, fossil hunting, and learning about the bird calls and plants we found on our walks in the woods.
On the property we visited today there were trilliums growing, and shelf fungus… wild violets and lichens. As we drove down the dirt roads I lusted after large flat rocks that had recently been unearthed by the road grater. They reminded me of drives I took down the roads near my previous house (built on my grandparents’ former clover field that they grew for their honey bees). I wasn’t too proud to throw rocks for my garden into the back of my Subaru.
I also smiled at the sight of mayapples in the understory that are just starting to pop up. When my daughters were small we walked in the woods that I walked as a kid, and we told stories about the fairies who lived under the mayapples and played in and around the tree roots in the dry creek bed. I’m still dealing with unresolved feelings about having to let my mom’s house, which was formerly my grandparents’ house, go back to the bank after mom died. Some days, not being able to take my son and grand-daughter for walks in those woods really burrows deep in my bones and makes me angry. There’s no one to be angry at, of course, so I have to let it go. But a walk in the woods brings those feelings up out of my bones a little.
Maybe we’ll find our own property covered with mayapples and trillium… peppered with perfect flat rocks just begging to go into my garden. My son can learn the difference between the hoot of a barred owl and a barn owl and understand that “No Service” is a blessing, not a curse. We’ll just keep taking drives on Sundays and hiking the back roads until we do.