…can change the world. I actually believe that. As the car swerved on the gentle curves of the pebbled road, I peered beyond the window and glimpsed the mighty Adirondacks in the distance. Patched against a pale blue sky, the mountains were shaded in cerulean: blue on blue on blue as far as the eye can see. They stood tall and wise as ancient and awe-inspiring observers of the greenland and hills surrounding them. We knew we had reached a critical point in our journey when the roads got steeper and narrower as birch trees crowded in on us to remind us that we were entering their wild territory.
This trip was not an escape; it was an ache for expansion.
We ached to leave New York City for a few days to bask in the raw wilderness of the mountains and woods, to sleep among the immense silence of the trees and beneath the colossal swath of dark sky that lit up with a billion blinking stars. This trip was not an escape; it was an ache for expansion. Sometimes, living in New York City can feel like a contraction: the space is contracted to fit so many of us in one place, we contract and tense our bodies to fit into crowded subway cars, and sometimes we even contract ourselves in order to get along and play nice with everyone. But here, in the undesecrated wilderness, there is only expansion. Each moment felt like an exhale, easy and soft and soothing.
We stood on serpentine roots, washed our hands in the gentle gurgle of spring water creeks, breathed in the easy air of the trees and mountains.
We felt part of something ancient. We stood on serpentine roots, washed our hands in the gentle gurgle of spring water creeks, breathed in the easy air of the trees and mountains. We felt rejuvenated, revitalized and raw. We were alone in the woods and on our hikes (with the exception of the occasional fellow hiker and the impressively adventurous hiking families with their troop of dogs), but we did not feel alone. We felt immensely held by the life around us: the rustle of the leaves, the gurgle of the creek, the wind whispering through the trees, the animals, the birds, the clouds, the sky. We felt part of the beauty and wildness.