by Mary Oliver
My work is loving the world.
Here the sunflowers, there the hummingbird—
equal seekers of sweetness.
Here the quickening yeast; there the blue plums.
Here the clam deep in the speckled sand.
Are my boots old? Is my coat torn?
Am I no longer young, and still half-perfect? Let me
keep my mind on what matters,
which is my work,
which is mostly standing still and learning to be
The phoebe, the delphinium.
The sheep in the pasture, and the pasture.
Which is mostly rejoicing, since all the ingredients are here,
which is gratitude, to be given a mind and a heart
and these body-clothes,
a mouth with which to give shouts of joy
to the moth and the wren, to the sleepy dug-up clam,
telling them all, over and over, how it is
that we live forever.
[Photo taken this summer at Upper Kananaskis Lake, Alberta.]
T and I have been fortunate enough to travel out of the city three weekends in a row now, and I’m realizing how rejuvenating these trips are for me. It’s difficult to find balance in New York sometimes and these weekly interruptions have provided the perfect reprieve.
Today we were lured upstate by the promise of a fabled swimming hole. Hidden in the middle of a forest in the Catskills, I swear this spot was plucked out of a movie. The sun shimmers through leafy canopies, the water is deep and clear, and there are plenty of tall rocks to launch off of. My friends and I spent the afternoon diving into the chilly pond, snacking on cherries and watermelon, and laughing over cold beers — an idyllic summer day, if you ask me.
Even though T and I were lolling about the island’s beaches a mere week ago, it already feels like a distant memory. Today, I’m daydreaming about the warm sun on my skin and saltwater in my hair. Here are a few of my favourite photos from the trip. xx
This past weekend T and I headed upstate, where we rented a charming little cabin in the Northern Catskills. Have you ever been that way? It was so lovely; I can’t recommend visiting enough. Here are a few memories we made along the way.
On the drive up, we stopped in the town of Saugerties and shared a delicious shortcake overflowing with ripe strawberries at Miss Lucy’s Kitchen.
Okay okay. I didn’t really share :)
We made a few friends with manes…
…and maybe a few enemies with udders.
Speaking of animals, can you spot the black bear?
The Catskills and Hudson Valley are dotted with darling little towns that we loved ambling around in. We couldn’t make it to all of them, but a couple standouts were Tannersville (it’s got a cool hippie vibe and sits on the edge of Rip Van Winkle Lake, which is so fun to say!), and Hudson (it’s right on the river and seems to have six antiques shops on every block).
Tannersville’s Last Chance is a tavern, antiques store, cheese shop, and restaurant, all-in-one. They have a fantastic selection of beers and make some of the best pulled pork around.
I loved the little whales on Hudson’s street signs.
On Sunday, we went canoeing on North-South Lake.
During our walk to the boat launch, a couple of kids introduced us to a dinosaur :)
Perhaps my favourite part of the whole trip though, was admiring Haines Falls.
Do you have a favourite getaway memory? I’d love to hear!