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Wednesday, March 4, 2015


I am attached to the place I live; sometimes to the extent of forgetting it is not the whole world. 

I live among maple, birch and spruce, in the company of chickadees and jays, ducks and deer in an old residential area of Riverview, NB. Here, it is easy to forget that the river, the bay, the Acadian forest and mountains so close to me are not the whole world for everyone.

Last weekend, we went to Halifax, Nova Scotia and stayed in a hotel where the scenery was office towers and apartment buildings.  This photo is an elliptical-shaped building, The Martello; the penthouse is offered for $860,000. plus the monthly condo fees.  The other view was the snow covered uprising slope of The Citadel, topped with white masts; it looked like the whole hill might be ready to set sail.  Of course, there were trees and parks within the city, and as always, the gorgeous harbour.

It was unlike what I am used to, that’s all.  Not better or worse, simply different.  And that was good.  My poetry writing mind and my photo seeing mind were piqued and stimulated by those changes.  It was a challenge and gift to roam the city because it was not familiar. 

I realized that I am stuck in my love of the place I live.

It is helpful and nourishing to get away to unfamiliar surroundings, to get unstuck and be invited to walk streets shaded and squeezed by sky scrapers, to notice an abundance of seagulls, oak trees six stories tall, myriad bistros and cafes, all as inviting as our own, but different.

We drove out to Peggy’s Cove on Sunday.  The granite boulders and the ocean were strangely soothing.  The Cove has never disappointed; ice, like thin frosting offered the same visual warning to stay off as did the wet, black rocks in summer.  And like summer, people still walked out to the edges, despite the cautions.

I enjoyed the trip away.  It was good to be free of responsibilities, to do what I wanted, when I wanted.

But, coming home, I relearned something I’ve always known. The damp salt air, the stony beaches, the salt water marsh, the muddy Petitcodiac River, the deciduous and evergreen forests of Albert County, New Brunswick are where my roots stretch deep into the earth and hold me in place.

They are my home.


Jane Tims said...

Hi Carol. The spaces where we live are so much a part of us. I, like you, have the woods and birds as a characteristic of my space and I am so lucky. Halifax was once a big part of my life, when I went to Dalhousie U. In the 70s. To this day, I can navigate there very well. I don't think I would feel at home in a much bigger city than Halifax.

Carol Steel said...

Thanks for the comment, Jane. I do like Halifax and would love to live close to the ocean. I know where I live is home, but would move in a heartbeat if I could afford a small place on the coast. There's a pull to the ocean, I hear in my veins.

South Branch Scribbler said...

Very nice Carol.

Carol Steel said...

Thank you, Allan. And thanks for visiting my blog.

Crafty Green Poet said...

I love where I live too but it's always nice to get away once in a while, glad you enjoyed your trip

Carol Steel said...

Thanks, Juliet. It was great to escape but it felt very good to be back home, too.