In my books, solitude and serenity go hand in hand. The ultimate in peacefulness is a week spent at our lakeside cabin where the only sound to break the silence is the occasional call of a loon, and the only company is wildlife wandering through in search of breakfast.
For much of our week we were the only people anywhere near the lake… the only ones paddling or swimming in it, or enjoying an evening campfire by its shore. (And yes, those are S’mores we were making.)
It’s not all recreation, of course. There’s always work to be done, too – like clearing the overgrown pathway to the creek from which we haul water, cutting and stacking wood from a downed tree, or putting siding on the storage shed we built last summer.
But in the stillness of this place, the pace slows. There is time to sit and stare at the nothing that is everything. It is a place of beauty and seclusion, ‘off the grid’, discovered by my parents almost seventy years ago. Four generations of our family have continued to be drawn here, mesmerized by the tranquility.
We eat when we’re hungry, go to bed when we’re tired, and sleep to the burble of the creek that tumbles just beyond our window.
That’s my kind of holiday, but I never quite manage to capture it accurately in a photo despite the hundreds of shots I take. No matter… there’s always another day.
I know not everyone is able to take holidays, and ‘roughing it’ in solitude wouldn’t be everyone’s ideal if they could. What would be your getaway of choice?
And He said to them,
“Come away by yourselves to a secluded place
and rest a while.”
Mark 6:31b (NAS)
Being solitary is being alone well…
being alone luxuriously immersed in doings of your own choice,
aware of the fullness of your won presence
rather than of the absence of others.
Because solitude is an achievement.
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