May Is My Month
By this time, every year I begin to twitch badly. I just want to go. I need to go. I need to leave. I have been stuck inside, more or less for over six months. Hibernating is a drag because I cannot do the continuous sleep that bears can. I keep waking-up: “Still snow …”
In May things change: even here in Grizzly country by the end of May the snow is gone (well, unless you go as far north as Polar Bear country). I suppose if you are underneath the sixtieth parallel, you can enjoy the green grass which bravely brakes through the melting snow at this time (or a little earlier). There are all sorts of movements: little bugs, critters, all our animal cousins start sniffing at the new spring air … Everyone’s happy for the most part: everyone who has managed to make it through the long and tiresome winter months.
I keep looking at my tent(s), sleeping bags, binoculars, bear-bells, thermal mattresses … my walking stick; it is always here with me (behind me at the moment, by the bookshelf: it also wants to go). I chopped-up this walking stick from Pukaskwa National Park (http://www.dabrowski.ca/projects/pukaskwa/) ages ago, from what it seemed like half a dead tree hanging-out on the beach. It is a good walking stick: it is tough, light, has a perfect height in relation to my own height and it molds around my wrist as I hold it, in a most peculiar yet convenient way, making my wrist rest on it. It is ready. It is always ready.
I am not sure when my first time in a forest was. I honestly recall forested mountains in my memory together with learning how to ride a bicycle, learning how to fish, how to swim … I grew-up spending two-three months, every year in my grandmother’s village in the Carpathian Mountains. Mountains are magical for me, in many ways.
Therefore, even now as soon as the snow melts I begin thinking about going up-north. That is what you say here (“you’re welcome” - for teaching you Toronto slang) when you want to let people know that the city is getting to you and you are going to the bush: “I’m going-up north”. That can mean camping, fishing, cottage, Waasaga Beach, Sauble Beach – it is all “up-north”. We cannot really go south here because we would end-up in New York State and that would be a different story.
I certainly do not want to sound like a complete anti-social psychopath (I know I have said before that I trust other species of animals more than some humans). I like cities as well: the concrete jungle. I manage. The multitude of people, cultures, personalities – that is what makes cities fun (in my opinion) but in the forest it is more than fun. I never have to look over my shoulder; it is always safe. Well, sometimes I do because these raccoons nowadays are big thieves: I remember one running off with a bag of bread. While it was running, slices of bread were falling out of the bag and I was chasing after it and at the same time picking-up the slices of bread from the ground; all this while my buddy was in tears, laughing …
I feel at home in the forest. It is the one place where I feel like I can truly rest: my body, as well as my soul. I love being in the forest. I love all the little bugs, chipmunks, squirrels, foxes, wolves, bears, birds, fishes and trees. They are part of my family and I always feel welcomed amongst them; I always long to return.
More by this Author
Some years back, I wrote a piece here on Hub-pages about Suicide and Hunter S. Thompson. I loved him as a writer and when he chose to take his life, I felt it was an honorable decision. The man lived a full life, with...
I woke up again for the third or fourth time in my life to the news that someone close to me has given up on this life. My grandma just stopped breathing. To a certain extent, I do not want to...
I must say right from the beginning that I love Sweetgrass! More often than not, I have a braid or two with me. I love the fresh and sweet smell it has, it reminds me of a particular scent which I encountered in my...