A small pool in Willow Creek, ponderosa pines and rock cliffs
These are the things that won our hearts 38 years ago. I was pregnant with what I thought was our second child--turned out to be twins. My husband and I both grew up on farms and wanted our own "piece of land." We had thought to build but when we had three babies in diapers and a 45-minute commute to work, it was not practical at the time.
Over the years we fell in love with our community,our inner-city neighborhood, our 1940-built house and our urban lifestyle. Several times a year we would decide to go "check on" our land, to see the autumn colors of scrub oak, to climb the cliffs and look for petrified wood, to see snow on the trees and rocks or to picnic among the wild flowers.
Wild flowers covering the meadow.
Two days ago we went out to "walk on and love" our land. We have never named it. It has always been just "The Land" or "Our Land." When our three boys began driving, they would go out and camp among the ponderosa trees. A group of their friends who had played soccer, done gymnastics, been on swimming teams and in Scouts with them adopted The Land as their hang-out, camp-out place.
During their college years they would have reunion camp-outs. One friend, studying horticulture, decided to do some "housekeeping." He cleaned the trail from the road and placed rocks along the side. He cut some dead or dying trees into trunks for seating and created a rock fire ring for safe campfires. The boys, and now their wives and girlfriends, even chipped in for an environmentally friendly porta-potty situated at a discreet distance from the campsite.
Fire pit in the trees, looking toward the meadow and cliffs.
Tomorrow one of the last of the former "high school group" is getting married--just two months before their 20-year high school class reunion. I doubt that visiting The Land is one of their priorities for this weekend, but I wouldn't be surprised if some day we get a call asking if they could go out there for a while.