Mountains Are A Must

I have almost forgotten about the mountains.

My heart and mind have been in such a whirlwind this week, that I start and end each day by the stars.

The mountains appear at daylight and fade by night (when the moon is not full) and my business has neglected them during the thin window of daylight that occurs while I am actually in my house.

My alarm goes off, I lift my head from the pillow and note a northwesterly star just above Winter Star Peak. At some point after my Morning Pages but before I finish my twenty-minute self-directed French lesson, enough sunlight breaks ground to illuminate the tops of the rhodis and help distinguish between land and sky. This is when I begin cooking my breakfast. If it’s cereal, I can take my time. If it’s Pataki curry on eggs (fresh from Zane’s hens) with spinach and goat cheese, I have to hop to it. Nine times out of ten I eat one or the other of these meals for breakfast.

Always, always, I note the skyline as I tromp down the three steps to the gravel path, which leads to my car. This morning the skyline opposite the Black Mountains was violet-pink. The Blacks were not yet lit up when I left.

Once I get out to the pavement and hit the state highway, I can get a full frontal look at the Black Mountains that is almost postcard perfect. Most mornings I have a hard time staying on my side of the road during this stretch of the drive, but I always have to look.
There are specific creases that my eyes fall into, checking for snow or waterfalls, estimating snowmelt and subsequently eyeballing the water level of the river one mile further down the highway. The correlation is immediate and it doesn’t take a rocket scientist to enjoy studying nature in this way – even if I am commuting, even if I’d rather be in it that drive past it, even if I say a silent poem or prayer to that range, that river, that pasture, every time my eyes skim their mind-soothing surfaces.

Note to self: Hike this weekend.

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