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after some much-needed rest...

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Aug. 23rd, 2001 | 12:08 am
mood: contentcontent

I'm back in the Cities (yes, they are capitalized and yes, they are plural, and they refer to the Twin Cities, Minneapolis and St. Paul, Minnesota -- as opposed to the City, singular, which refers to New York City, specifically Manhattan) after a week of fun up in the North Woods. My family (well, my mom and brother and I -- my dad was only there for a couple days) spent a week up on Wynne Lake at Giants Ridge enjoying lake life. We rented boats and canoes to go out on the lake, and we swam and lay in the sun reading and all of the other things that are "lake" activities. And the best part was being far away from cell phones and computers and most technology.

I never thought I would hear myself say that -- hear myself needing to completely disconnect myself from all of my life except my family and just get away to the middle of nowhere, but I guess that is a side effect of living in a city. It really puts things into perspective, in a way -- you learn to take care of yourself, including learning when you really need to get away.

The woods, Superior National Forest, specifically, are beautiful. They're raw and open and not man-built forests, and a lot of it even feels untouched by man. It feels, being up there, like it's just you and the trees and the road and the lakes and that is a wonderful wonderful feeling.

Not to mention the stars are incredible. In the city, one doesn't see stars-- there's too much light. In the suburbs, one sees some stars, on a clear night, but still, the light problem exists -- too much light to really see stars... but there are a few here and there that burn brightly enough to shed their light through the artificial haze here. But it's not like it is up north, where there are all kinds of stars, and on a clear night, one can even find the hazy cloud of the milky way running through them.

The kind of beauty that I saw up there is still with me -- the power in the waterfalls at Gooseberry Falls, and the simple beauty in the trees and the leaves, and the elegance of beaver houses on the lake. And Split Rock, probably one of the most photographed lighthouses ever, with its sort of majesty, built into the rocky cliffs that border Lake Superior.

We saw a lot. And we made s'mores and ate pasties and played on the lake. And Mom and I tried kayaking, just for the fun of it... to see if we could, I guess, and to see what it was like, and it was hard work, but surprisingly fun and empowering. It felt all around wonderful, and took me back to the happy memories of my childhood which meant at least two weeks of summer at Markham, on a secluded lake in the North Woods with its bright red cabin. The place where I learned to canoe and swim and sail and waterski and boat and everything.

I will write more coherently tomorrow. For now, it is time for me to put my sunburnt little self to bed.

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