Inquiries, insights, and imaginings from a small town girl who wants to do some good in this life.
Saturday, February 19, 2011
Home is Where the Heart Is
It was a blustery winter day in my hometown of Millinocket. Still, we braved the cold and headed to a family ice derby day at Jerry Pond. Meeting my brother, his wife, and two of their grandchildren there around lunchtime, we munched on free red hot dogs and drank hot cocoa. I’m not sure why but eating a hot dog when it’s freezing out is almost as enjoyable as having one at a ball park in the summertime.
We walked out to the pond and checked out the families who were ice fishing. Having never been ice fishing, we talked with a family about their experiences. My brother told me about the folks he knows who spend their days out on the ice. I suppose sitting on the ice for hours each day can be compared to my enjoying my time on the dock at camp. There’s a sense of peace that comes from that solitude on the water, whether it’s rippling or frozen solid. Although I’ll choose the dock in the summer, I can well understand the attraction of ice fishing. I truly can.
My brother gave us rides on his snowmobile. My son went first. Noemi went second. My daughter was next. I hadn’t been on a snowmobile since I was a child. As we zipped across the pond, I laughed with delight that I’d been brave enough to board the back of his sled too.
Later we socialized with some townspeople by the campfire. “Oh, we know your father! Oh, we know your grandfather!”, my children and I heard them exclaim. My daughters enjoyed their stories and in return, the group of elderly men enjoyed the company of a few sweet and pretty young ladies for a little while.
Before leaving, we laughed as we watched my great-nephew jump joyously from a big snowbank. As I took in the four year old’s happiness and saw him run excitedly to his grandfather for the snowmobile ride home, I found myself thinking. The people who say otherwise are so wrong. You can indeed go home again. Although I love being with family at camp in July and August, my hometown is a very heartwarming place to be, even on a blustery February day.