Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Just musing about my past

This. . .

. . . not this.
Those who know me fairly well know that I don't like salt water. I'm done with salt water, having lived near it, vacationed on it, and sailed on it for years and years and years and.... well, you get the picture. I'm happy to be in the middle of the country, about as far away from the sea as one can get in the United States. So why, when I caught a whiff of something on my way to Afton yesterday that reminded me of the sea, did I suddenly have a pang of nostalgia for my sailing days on Long Island Sound and and the Atlantic? Incomprehensible!

I don't dislike water in general. I like lakes, and I love rivers and streams. I like boats -- I mean the kind that don't tip over in the slightest wind and threaten to throw you overboard into an angry sea. In fact, had I still been married, I'd be living on a lake right now, and I'm sure I'd be spending a lot of time in our bass boat. And yet, nothing can compare to my beloved flat, dry Great Plains, where I can see for miles in every direction, where I can watch wheat wave and corn grow and cattle graze, where roads are arrow-straight or gently curved, where breezes are free from sticky salt spray, where I can appreciate the beauty of cloud formations rather than analyze them for signs of impending disaster, where a good rainstorm refreshes rather than frightens me.

So why the sudden nostalgia? I guess it's because nostalgia is an insidious thing. It grabs at your mind when you least expect it, and it's not related to much of anything. Nostalgia works hard to make sure we don't ignore our past, since our past is what we're made of. Apparently there's still some salt water rolling around in my veins somewhere, and today it reared it's ugly head. I hope it doesn't happen too often.


Ken Riches said...

We love going to Florida each year and getting our fix of the ocean. Not much for boating, but love the smell, the wildlife, and the waves. Of course, we are always glad to get back to the midwest :o)

Trevor Hilton said...

I like lakes and rivers, but, actually, I'm sorta afraid of deep water. I can walk a lot farther than I can swim.

Beth said...

I second Ken's comment. We love being at the beach for a week, but there really is nothing like our flatland home. My Dad says that when he was a boy on their farm, and all the windows were open at night, he could hear the corn growing. I do not doubt him one bit. Hugs, Beth