Sunburn and Bliss

Although I kept a great habit of hiking this winter, and getting outdoors quite a bit regardless of the temp, something magical happens when the warmth arrives. The line between inside and outside becomes deliciously blurred. I can eat outside, sleep outside, and stay outside as long as I wish to. The wind no longer bites, the cold no longer burns, and the sun no longer sets at 4pm. There is a gentleness in the wind, even when it is blowing mightily. The sun-warmed, pine-covered slopes are sweet with their resiny perfume, in a way that evokes memories and impressions of my childhood.

The frogs are singing in the dam, we’ve enjoyed our first thunderstorm, and I’ve fallen asleep to the sound of rain on our roof. I’ve woken up with sore muscles from strenuous hikes, sore shoulders that got a little too much sun, and taped blisters on my feet. I’ve hung clothes on the line to dry, and hammocked under the stars. Spring is finally here.2019-04-23_06-41-05After wintertime and never venturing out with fewer than what seems like a hundred layers, it is delicious to wear a tanktop and feel the breeze and sun on my arms, and get a little sunkissed, or even a little toasted. The days are longer, the nights are warmer, and it becomes more of a struggle to stay indoors.

But summer is almost here! And what means work at the greenhouse will start, teaching will be done for the season, and my life will be lived more and more outside. Which is what I love.

So I nurse my sunburns and sore muscles and wind burnt face as glorious symptoms of bliss.


The kittens were very intrigued, particularly the most timid of the three, Boomerang, when Katie and I began setting the hammocks up Sunday night. I mean, we were in their trees. It was clear that was going through their little fuzzy heads. HammockingThis was my first venture into hammock camping (yes, in my front yard). Once I finally got up at 6am and went to the bathroom, got a snack, and an extra blanket, I slept wonderfully for the next two hours! Somehow I didn’t really realize I was cold all night, but the extra blanket to go under the sleeping bag and actually climbing into the sleeping bag rather than using it simply to line the hammock really made the difference. I slept great.

It was so cozy sleeping (or trying to sleep) under the stars, even though without my contacts in they look like little faint fuzzy blobs. Kittens periodically came and checked us out. We heard the cows occasionally. The coyotes sang a little at first. There wasn’t a single bug. Once we woke up, we brought out tea and coffee, huddled in our blankets, laughed at the kittens and their shenanigans, chatted, and watched the morning roll in. It was delightful.