“Somebody saved me:” I will never forget that phrase. Here’s the context in which Raymond and I heard it:
Our Queensborough friend Elaine Kapusta was talking to us about the days when she and her husband, Lud, were living in the big city (Toronto, New York, Ottawa) and working at important, stressful jobs, but commuting when they could to their beautiful historic house in Queensborough. It is probably the nicest house in the whole village, and it is Elaine’s family home, the house where she grew up. (Kind of like me and the Manse. We are starting a club, you know, we people who bought the Queensborough house we grew up in.)
Only people who live in the big stressful city but are fortunate enough to have a house in somewhere tiny and quiet like Queensborough can fully appreciate how wonderful it is to get to that place of retreat after a week of city life and work. To be suddenly surrounded by near-silence, and space, and (if it is a clear night) a sky full of stars – well, it does one’s heart, and one’s soul, a world of good.
That was what Elaine was talking about. She said that in those days she would stand out on her front porch looking out at Queensborough and think: “Somebody saved me.”
That is how I feel when we get to the Manse at the end of the drive from Montreal. At first the quiet is almost startling. And then you hear the few sounds there are: a dog barking; once every few hours a car driving by; and best of all, the water of the Black River tumbling over the dam in front of Elaine and Lud’s place. Beautiful.
I was reminded of this by a post today on the blog of my new friend Jo-Ann Blondin. Jo-Ann and her husband also divide their time between the big city and the Queensborough area. Her excellent blog, called 9 Cup Challenge, is primarily about healthy eating, with a huge emphasis on vegetables and fruit; as a vegetable lover, I am a large fan. (Check out the guacamole recipe here.) But sometimes she writes about their life in the country, and today’s post – which includes a video in which you can hear the sound of the ice in the river cracking, and the sound of the Canada Geese overhead, and most especially the precious sound of silence – is just lovely. Go read it!
P.S. If you do, there’s a bonus toward the end. I don’t want to give away any secrets, but let’s just say that Mickey, the dog with ears that look remarkably like those of a familiar Disney character, is pretty darn cute…