Thursday, February 12, 2009

Moved to Mars

My mother taught me a love of new places and new experiences. But that doesn't mean transitions were always easy for her. She wrote the following shortly after a move to Ellicott City, Maryland, from Highland, Utah, where we'd lived for many years. What I see in it is her determination to find what is good and beautiful and interesting in this new place, far from friends and family. Before the move, I remember her reading maps, articles, and everything else about Maryland she could get her hands on. I think she was determined to try and get us excited about this big--and potentially disruptive--move, and even to persuade herself. In the end, Maryland became very much home for her, in so many ways, and she deeply loved the house and yard there on Wild Filly Court and so many new friends who came into our lives.

June 1, 1987

Dear Ones,

In some ways I feel we’ve moved to Mars. We are so far from anyone familiar, and the world around us is so different. We remember you all in our prayers, and that is our tie to home.

* * * *

We took a walk after Church along the Patapsco River. We walked through a tunnel of huge, green trees, and the undergrowth was filled with wild roses, blackberries, ferns, wild rhododendron (that’s what it looked like to me), and even some grapes. Tangles of vines and some honeysuckle climb the trees and bushes. All the growth kills noise—except for the bird songs. It was like the Pagsanhan River in the Phillipines, except the trees and plants weren’t tropical. They were just as green. There were lots of irridescent bugs around—greens and blues. The trail we walked on used to be brick or cobblestoned, but it was crumbling and covered with years of dirt. We saw an old, moss-covered chimney and wondered how old it was. It appeared that in the very old days some homes were built along the river. I’m sure it was used for transportation. It must have been difficult to cut roads through these forests. If all the people here now were to leave, it wouldn’t be long until all trace of us would disappear too.

No comments: