I watched the sun rise over the foothills this morning from the window above my kitchen sink. There wasn’t much rosy-fingered dawn, but it was still a vibrant sight. Most of the year I have to imagine it, but now that the leaves are down and snow is on the ground, I can hum Here Comes the Sun (Abby’s favorite Beatles’ song) and really mean it. I’ve been lucky enough to see the sun drop behind the Camden Hills overlooking Penobscot Bay and into the waters of the Florida Keys, too. I never take a sunrise or a sunset for granted, for it means I’ve earned another day, probably to waste, but there’s always a chance for glory.
I’ve seen some neat things in my travels. I rode down the Grand Canyon on a mule once. I was so scared that I had my eyes closed some of the time, but the mule was well-trained and knew where he was going. The fact that I had to throw my clothes away—the combination of stark-terror-sweat and eau de mule was overpowering—was a small price to pay for mostly seeing a Natural Wonder. I’ve stood in an abandoned ring of standing stones in Great Britain, mist creeping in, visited a “thin place” in Scotland where any moment it seemed Rob Roy MacGregor (or at least Liam Neeson) might appear, driven along the Cabot Trail in Cape Breton, the rugged cliffs and ocean one of the most beautiful sights on earth. Lights of Vegas. Central Park in the summer in love. I’ve been lucky, even though travel with all its associated headaches is not the lure it once was.
Where have you been that’s left a lasting sense of place? How do you incorporate that in your writing?