My love of the mountains wasn’t innate, although today it serves me well. I suspect that it was my fear of the unseen that held me back. I tried living over on the west side, right out of high school and longed for the wide open spaces of the wheat-fields that I called home as a child.
I married a mountain boy. Tom loves the mountains. Aside from his love of dirt, I would suspect the mountains are his greatest love. I know that it has been the years of watching him – the change that happens in him, when he is there that has caught me as well.
As deeply as he is rooted in the soils of the wheat-land in Columbia County, the Blue Mountains are as deep. His family has had land there for over a hundred years. And, those mountains seems to call to him, and he to them when life gets to be a bit to much.
Given the choice, I would probably still choose a ranchette in the middle of 40 dirty-dusty tumble weed invested acres, but over the thirty years of being married to a mountain man, I have began to feel equally as comfortable there. I have learned to appreciate the hunting of morels in the spring, and the elderberries that will be turned into cold medicine in the fall. My eyes have gotten keener about seeing what lurks behind the trees and my ear accustomed to noises, differentiating between what should be and what shouldn’t.
I didn’t always appreciate the simplicity that come with being on the mountain…. like the rain on the tin roof of the cabin and hauling fresh spring water… But, I do now. Maybe it is age, or time, or that I have somehow, among all the other things that have challenged me to grow, grown into it.
I think it is fair to say that added to all the things I have become over time, I can easily add to the list… A Mountain Girl.