“Look at your feet. You are standing in the sky. When we think of the sky, we tend to look up, but the sky actually begins at the earth. We walk through it, yell into it, rake leaves, wash the dog, and drive cars in it. We breathe it deep within us. With every breath, we inhale millions of molecules of sky, heat them briefly, and then exhale them back into the world.” -Diane Ackerman, A Natural History of the Senses
Several weekends ago Ben and I drove to nearby(ish) Whidbey Island to hike around Ebey’s Landing. After coming back from Vietnam I needed to do something to remind myself that we live in a beautiful place, and I can find adventure and beautiful scenery here too. This hike was all that — we were tiny people under a big, big sky and we could see for miles, and everywhere we looked was photo-worthy.
It’s a funny thing about traveling that leaves me with this lingering feeling of discontent, like the world is so big and I’m just in one small part of it and somehow I’m missing out on what might be happening everywhere else. Which is silly, I know. I don’t want to romanticize things in retrospect. I remember sweating so much on our last day in Hanoi that our clothes were still wet when we unpacked them 72 hours later in Seattle. There was that moment I wondered about bed bugs, and the constant question of what the next bathroom (or field on the side of the road) might be like. Home, lacking that uncertainty, is so very good. So constant and routine. But I sit, still, with the discontent. I call it out for what it is and let it push me a little…maybe into starting a savings fund for the next big trip, reading a travel book and letting myself daydream about somewhere else, or going on a Saturday hike not so far from home.
It pushes me to find ways to remind myself that my small part of the world is not a bad place to land.
If you want to do this hike too, take a look at the Washington Trails Association info about Ebey’s Landing.