Finding Peace in the Grapes and Blueberries

This summer has included a few moments spent in my happy place, which is actually about 28 minutes from my house.

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I drive there about once a month. There’s a pond there and an older couple who inhabit the cabin situated pond-side. The owners keep three dogs and a cat and leave me to be the head of the household when their cyclist wanderlust takes them to the road. If you ask, they also spin tales about a ghost in the house who keeps the wine bottles and snake skins company in the basement.

There’s also a lantern man in the woods that hovers on the vicinity of the property. I shared details before on one night that I saw him bobbing between trees.

Hauntings and all, this is my happy place. At least once a month I spend a weekend out here picking fresh fruit from the bushes and trees, eating ten bowls of cereal, and enjoying the sunset from a hanging swing hugged by baby grapes.

The swing faces the pond, and once the humidity dies by late evening, it’s a place I frequent with Oliver nuzzling my hands and cocking his head at birds hiding in the brambles.

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The last time I was there, the blueberries were peaking. I picked a pan of them barefoot. I freed at least three trapped butterflies from under the thin white netting that keeps out the deer and birds. My ankles were red by the end of the hour from the piles of fresh cut grass against sensitive skin. My mind was blank in plucking little fruits.

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There’s something so calming about it. I’ve done it since I was young, so it invokes a feeling of nostalgia to accompany the bliss of relaxing mindlessness.

I remember the last time I was picking blueberries here. A mood mixture of sleeplessness and working many hours. My back hurt as much as my heart, but with my feet on the grass and the summer air in my lungs, I could not have been more at peace.

I couldn’t be more thankful for this place.

I ate the unwashed blueberries on the swing. There was a pile of orange Shorthair fluffiness beside me and the silence that comes from a non-existent breeze, distant neighbors, and an open sky where the birds feel as far off as stars existing in space.

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