Tag Archive | North Carolina

Escape to the Quiet

This post is a part of the Five Minute Friday link up. We write for just 5 minutes on a one-word prompt, without heavy editing, and see what happens. This week’s word is “quiet.”

Last week my newly graduated from high school daughter and I took a trip to the mountains of North Carolina. She wanted to hike, write, and cook. We accomplished all of those things (albeit with blisters from ill-fitting hiking boots that I had gotten a month in advance just to make sure that wouldn’t happen) and had a fun time together.

One of the things that struck us the most was just the quiet of the setting we were in. We rented an AirBnB cabin for the week that we had to traverse up a steep gravel road to get to. We were surrounded by green with only the occasional dog barking marring the utter stillness. Even the birdsong enhanced the quiet.

We’re used to a lot of noise. We live in the suburbs, but have to endure the noise of completely obnoxious backfiring cars (what is it with that modification that makes the drivers like that?), speeding motorcycles with roaring engines that fly up the main road outside our subdivision, super loud airplanes that take off overhead because the airport is conveniently about 15 minutes away. It’s just noisy. And distracting. And often frustration-inducing. Makes me want to put my hands over my ears like my 3-year-old grandson and say, “Loud noise! Loud noise!”

I know I shouldn’t let it get to me. There is a lot that is good about where we live. But if I could take our house, our church, our friends, and the conveniences that I enjoy close by and transplant them to the quiet of the mountains, I’d do it in a hot minute.

But for now, a week at a time will have to do.

Need a Lift?

This post is a part of the Five Minute Friday link up. We write for just 5 minutes, without heavy editing, on a one-word prompt and see what happens. Today’s word is “lift.”

We looked ahead of us on the narrow, wooded trail and saw only incline. In my head, I started to doubt the map.

We had been hiking for almost two hours on what was supposed to be a 2-mile journey to a rocky outcrop called William’s Pulpit. We had seen very few others on the trail, none who seemed to be on their way back. Except for that one couple and their dog who had started just ahead of us, but turned back after less than half an hour.

But we had made it this far. We couldn’t stop now. And so we took another step. And another. And another. By lifting one foot off the ground, placing it in front of the other and doing it again over and over, we kept going.

Finally, we saw it: the small wooden sign nailed to the tree with a small arrow scratched in pointing to the left: < William’s Pulpit. We had made it. The Florida lowlanders had climbed to 3220 feet.

And the view really was worth it.

On our way back down we encountered two other women and a family of four on their way up. We were able to assure them that their destination was up ahead, that they would see a long incline and think there was no way they could make it, but when they got to the top, they’d be there.

Both parties continued on their hike with smiles on their faces because we had given them hope.

Hebrews 12:1 in the Amplified Bible says, “Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses [who by faith have testified to the truth of God’s absolute faithfulness], stripping off every unnecessary weight and the sin which so easily and cleverly entangles us, let us run with endurance and active persistence the race that is set before us.”

Trusting those who have gone before, especially the ones who made the maps, can give you a needed lift when you feel ready to quit. The end result will be worth it.