Sunday, 20 July 2014

Two Ends Of The Road

There were no flames yesterday, no fires burning on distant mountainsides, no lone pines candling in to heat driven whirls, no giant dark clouds of ash and smoke, no smell of burning forest. Instead... it rained, at least where I was, a rain that started with a threat as I left Abbotsford, turned into a deluge up the Coquihalla, took a rest through Merritt, resumed in the Shuswap and continued all the way home from there. It was the kind of rain you only get in the meteorological extremes within the high peaks of Canada's great western mountain ranges. It ran the gamut from gentle drizzle to a deluge of biblical proportion; the mere threat of moisture was enough to bring most of the fires under control and the fact of rain took care of a great many more.

The changeability of our mountain climate is always a surprise, an unwelcome one to those not prepared for it. Campers who only a few days ago basked in record temperatures in the low 30's Celsius now huddled in their trailers and tents, beneath their tarps, bundled up against single digit cold. The rain washed through campsites and pushed mudslides across highways. In sites throughout this wilderness holiday land, people eyed with suspicion what would have been a mere babbling brook a day ago, now turned to a rising, turgid, turbid torrent whose colour resembles that of a Timmies Double Double and whose power now turns to smashing rocks and toppling trees.

I made it home yesterday, from my home across the mountains and far away to my home across the mountains and far away. I am a man torn between two loves, separated constantly from one or the other by a drive of a mere twelve hours along a strand of road weaving its way through some of the most immense country on the planet. When I am in Calgary, I yearn for those I miss in Vancouver. When I am in Vancouver, I yearn for those I miss in Calgary. To leave one is to want to return, no matter what my direction.

In some ways, I am the luckiest of men. I have, no matter which home I am in, friends and family who not only love me but encourage me to be with them or away from them. I have, in both places, tremendous support and care. I am loved in both places, with no jealousy one for the other. All I have to do is choose; that's the hard part. To choose one is to miss the other.

I will make the trek again, soon. I will make the trek back again, soon after. Then one day I will be unable to make the trek. Then I will consider myself unlucky.

1 comment:

  1. We'll trek to you Rick. Then we won't miss out on the joy of being with you.