My Dearest Lake Trail,
I am writing to tell you how much I have missed you these past months. My heart has been as bleak as the winter weather, which seems to be never ending lately. I know in the past I have visited even in the cold, but for some reason this year I could not bring myself to come. It seemed the cold cut through to my bones, and so I have been waiting for the warmth of spring. The fickle season has been slow in arriving. She has been teasing me with hopeful sundrenched days, only to find the temperature plummeting when I step outside, or a cold wind sneaking in to steal my breath away. I cannot tell you how disappointing it is to prepare to come for a visit, only to have a cold rain or unexpected chill interrupt a perfectly beautiful day. I feel the time is near, where I will finally be able to make my regular outings to spend time with you.
Last weekend, I had a small window of a chance to come, and oh, how I enjoyed our time together. You are looking so well. What the wet and cold winter took from me, she must have given to your lake, because it is full to running over. It is lovely to see the forest green waters so high along the shore. A flock of Canadian geese are enjoying this, hanging out on the banks and honking at passersby. The spillway is a waterfall, and therefore the river beneath must be bubbling along as well. A few people are gracing your path, trying to soak in the warmth, as am I. We smile at one another as if we share a great secret. The warmth of the sun and the breath of fresh mountain air does wonders for the muscles in our faces, not to mention our hearts and lungs. A brave fisherman floats on the water in a bright yellow kayak. I believe he is sitting there just to enjoy the sun, but trying to look busy, so he occasionally moves his rod around. I never see any fish.
Little children, just ahead of me on your path, run as soon as they see the playground. One little boy, probably 2 years old, grins and gives his dad a thumbs up and takes off for the slide. It is the way my heart feels too. I give you an invisible thumbs up in my mind…thank you Lake Trail…this is just what I came for. Beyond the playground filling with children, I cross your creek which, like your lake, is healthy and full. The gurgling is loud and rambunctious as if the waters are playing with the children. Your life is obvious today and it pours into me like water into a thirsty man.
By the time I get to your fishing bridge, I can feel the stress of the long winter leaving my body. My friend, I am sorry to say I had forgotten what benefit I get from our visits. It seems you know just what I need, when I need it. It is still a bit early for the butterflies, but I see one or two flit along my journey, and there are quite a few red flashes of cardinals dashing from place to place. There are leaves unfurling in all shades of green, just beginning to peek their faces out. You will be in the shade soon, but on this day the sunlight is a welcome companion on my walk. Laughter erupts from some teenagers who have braved the lake waters. As I approach the beach, the cold temperature can be heard in their gasps and squeals. It seems I am not the only one seeking outdoor fun.
My favorite part of you is the places that curve and wind through the coves of your lake. There is a sweet smell here, not quite time for honeysuckle, but whatever is blooming drips the sweet fragrance and it hangs in the air over me like incense. Like a prayer. Somehow, it is this section, where my brain is finally able to let go of worries and concerns. I like our communion together here where we are of one mind. My heart is beating hard and it fills my lungs with glorious oxygen. I begin to hear your beauty more clearly in the bird songs. I see your depth in the reflections of the trees in your waters. Your mountain views stun my eyes and fill my soul. I become calm and peaceful, as my heart beats the stress right out of me and it takes flight with the birds. This is why I come to see you Lake Trail. It is because you are such a good friend and you know just how to listen to my silence. We understand one another, and though I have neglected our time together as of late, you still get me. You still wait for my return, and meet me there to re-center whatever state I am in when I arrive. You fill my soul. Thank you, my friend. You will never know how much you mean to me, no matter how much I tell you, there is more depth than can be expressed by words. Fortunately, you are the kind of friend who doesn’t need words.