15 December 2012

Choosing A Tree

Day In Williamstown

We talked in the morning of the awful news from Sandy Hook, and I knew it was not my place to add to all of the anguished words about it. There was nothing for me to say, always a strange place for a writer. Some things are beyond words, even though we are awash in them. Sometimes, silence is a powerful statement. In the afternoon,  Maria and I headed to Western Massachusetts, and I was thinking on the way of the people and families in Sandy Hook and how they could not know a sweet afternoon like this for many months or years, if ever. Life if so precious, it is an awful thing to waste one day of it.

Every day, I tell myself to go forward. Every day I do, and will, as long as I can. It was a cool, crisp day. We went looking for a Christmas tree, among other things, and we stopped at some local places, but the trees were too large. We were looking for a small one to fit in the front corner of the living room. Maria and I often set out kind of aimlessly, and we have never been disappointed. We dawdle. The joy is being together, and it hardly matters where we are. I stopped to take some photos, but I was strangely shy about it and passed up some beautiful opportunities, I'm not sure why. I hate it when I do that. I tested my new Google Maps app for the Iphone 5 and it is swell.

We ended up in Williamstown, Mass., a beautiful Berkshires town, a school and museum town about an hour away. An easy ride through some beautiful country. The town was quiet, Williams College closed for the holidays.  College towns are almost eerily peaceful on holiday. We walked around the town and found a Thai restaurant and some great food – dumplings, Rama Garden with peanut sauce.

We went to the Clark Museum.  Most of the museum was closed off for massive renovation and addition work. There was no admission charge, so we wandered the open galleries looking at John Singer Sargent and Homer Winslow paintings and some others. It is just lovely to see great artist's work. We drove back through Vermont and came across a Christmas tree farm and we walked out to find out tree. My family always celebrated Christmas and I love the holiday and the spirit that shines through.  It is an affirmation for me. Our tree is about six feet tall and we got it home and put it in its stand, watered it and put some LED lights on it. More coming tomorrow. I'll take a photo when it's done. It can be seen from the road, which is nice.

The afternoon rolled perfectly, a healing counterpoint to the night before and the morning. It was a perfect afternoon, everything just fell into place. Life can be so hard, life can be so beautiful. We are expecting some strong winter weather this week and tomorrow we will get ready – feeders in the pole barn, extra water, lining up the hay, loading up the chicken coop, getting Minnie some food in the barn. We know the drill, it has been part of my life for 15 years.

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