I went to the woods to see a friend
I ran down roads lined with scenes like this, as geese flew overhead
She asked me if I missed living in New Hampshire. I said. No. It's too hard to be isolated, to pine for the arrival of a UPS truck, a tree man, a visit from a neighbor.
( I am a social animal.)
After a while, I missed dressing up, wearing high heels, being surrounded by pretty people wearing fashions I coveted. Though, sure, I missed the barn of cows and the raw milk waiting on the other side, the coffee can of cash, fresh cheese. So, I jogged down the road and bought morning eggs from a cooler in a yard, as a rooster greeted me.
Of course we needed toast with our eggs, so a quick trip in the other direction, yielded fresh country bread, baked three days a week in this oven.
Sold on the honor system in this unmanned storefront.
I know that in a few weeks, this beauty will turn ugly. In a few months it will bottle up the people, chain them to woodpiles and fireplaces. The woods will be silent. The geese, long gone.
And then, I remember, the way a community rallies.
The way the kindness of your neighbors is what helps you make it through. When the oil runs out. When the ice storm takes your power. When your family is hungry and the driveway needs plowing. A land this pretty needs its ugly parts too.
And maybe I do miss it. Just a little.
Or maybe now, having lived in the ugly for a while, I have forgotten
how pretty simple can be.