A cliff looms over the village of Kimberly. It looks like all the other hills, covered with forest, except for a large bare face at the top. They call it “Old Baldy”, and we hiked it today.
Mr. December, K, and R, or as they call themselves, “The Intrepid Ones”, began their hike in the valley; I dropped them off on the side of a narrow country road and waved goodbye. Two hours later I received a text saying, “We’re about 30m from the top now.” I got N and E into the car and drove to the trailhead at the top of Old Baldy. We hiked in to meet The Intrepid Ones. We heard their voices as we drew closer, and finally met up with them at the edge of a cliff.
The whole valley stretched out before us. There were boulders that led from the trail to an outcropping, and R led us there. Lying on our stomachs (the way Mr. December has taught the kids to safely look over the edge of a cliff) we saw the shadows cast by clouds, the farmers’ fields dotted with bales of hay, and the ski runs with their still and silent chair lifts.
We took the requisite selfies. Then we took a poll: who wanted to walk back down with Abba, and who wanted to walk to the car and go home right away? Both Intrepid kids voted to walk back to the car and go home, so we did. It had been a great hike — enough rocks and roots, ascent and descent — that felt like a “real” hike and not just a walk in the woods.
Today is a beautiful day to be outside. After sitting on the dock in the sun for an hour, I even agreed to swim with the kids. The water was icy at first, then for some reason burning hot (was that frostbite setting in?), and then reasonably pleasant. With the air at a balmy twenty-four degrees (Celsius, of course), It wasn’t such a bad swim. Still, I’ve passed that torch to Mr. December. At this very moment he’s standing at the end of the dock in his bathing suit, ready to jump in with the kids so I don’t have to (my hero!)
Since he’s in the water with the kids and the cottage and the porch are silent, I’m going to do something else I love to do on a nice day: take a nap.