I woke up in the wee hours of the morning to a freezing, biting cold. I found myself in the rustic cabin, free of heat and electricity and plumbing and insulation. But I was snuggled in tight with my down quilt around me and a soft bed below.
The three of us woke up later for real, and Felix started up the wood burning stove, stoking it hot and bright until the entire cabin filled up with sweet smoke and heat tickled us. Felix found part of the arts section and the wedding announcements of the New York Times in the box with the tinder, and brought me the scraps. I wriggled deeper into the blankets and read aloud from the paper.
The three of us felt like some kind of rugged yet cultured family, the kind that would build a cabin in the woods free from distractions. I imagined us spending summers tucked away in a forest, painting and writing and photographing in the still of the sun. We would wear berets and black and linen and be artist recluses.
It was fully 10am when we finally got dressed and walked the few steps to the rustic store that didn’t have electricity but did have a wood fire and piping hot coffee (perhaps cooked right on the wood burning stove). All our clothes, soaked from the day before, had dried out hanging from the low rafters.
We leisurely packed and talked and visited the outhouses (the cleanest I have ever experienced, they were actually quite a joy). I wished I lived there, forsaking my city rearing for life at a different pace. But then I remembered that I live in the woods right now, more rustic than any cabin could be.
We left Boomerang and the cabin in the sun of the early afternoon, trotting through the crisp, cool forest, feeling more and more like the Pacific Northwest I love with each footstep. Fall has come for us, and bits of rain were followed by delirious sunlight that danced on the moss covered trees.
I keep thinking about the end of the trip, so fast approaching. How will I ever be able to say goodbye to life in the woods? How will I reintegrate into life in Seattle?
But I can’t keep wondering about tomorrow when the wet trail sings to my nostrils and bounces my feet along the gentle path. Home is here for now, and that is quite enough for me.