A Much Better Sunday

After Saturday’s somewhat somber post, I thought I should offer a brief update after an excellent Sunday. The weather here has been remarkable the past few days, with clear, blue skies and no wind at all. Quite a change from the first few evenings, when wind was rattling the foundations of my cabin and the rain obscured the views of the mountains around me.

Yesterday was my first chance to get some real hiking in, and after three hours of writing on the novel and my teaching manifesto (more on that later, I’m sure), I headed out for a long walk through the countryside, before driving up another mountain pass to try to catch sunset.

It’s interesting to think about beauty when we travel. I live in what is clearly the most beautiful place in the world, but have been overwhelmed by the solitary wonder of Iceland, the breathtaking green of Ireland, and even the stately disorder of the buildings in Paris and Rome. Each time, especially in Iceland, I’m tempted to declare that I am, in fact, seeing the most beautiful place I will likely ever see.

Cantabria made me finally realize the absurdity of that view, as it has unexpectedly been as beautiful as any of those other spots, in entirely its own way. Lush, green Valleys and mountains filled with the bells of cows and goats, stone cabins and homes, and some of the most remarkable sunsets I’ve ever seen made me realize that I’ll probably never find “the most beautiful spot,” but can hope to keep finding beauty and wonder everywhere I visit.

Except Eastern Washington. Sorry, Moses Lake.