December 29, 2017 “I am just going outside,” Antarctic explorer Lawrence Oates told his colleagues in 1912, “and may be some time.” Oates never returned, but we return to Atlanta tomorrow after two weeks of skiing Vermont’s 300-mile backwoods cross country trail, the Catamount Trail. Today it was -12 F and the skiing was exhilarating — with windswept snow, complete silence, and fantastic ice sculptures in the branches.
An ice-coated birch even bowed in tribute to Robert Frost
While most of our culture is increasing its speed, it takes some time to slow to the point where one recognizes subtle differences in snow texture and hears the dactyls in Milton’s poetry. And the repetitive action of cross country skiing — like running, cycling, and swimming — somehow opens and organizes my thoughts, so I’ll return home a deeper listener and a more attentive teacher, mom, wife, daughter, and friend.