I hope you will all take the time to slow down. In life and on the road.
Life in the city is full of all the clichés you hear about. It is lots of hustle and bustle. One of the main factors in our move to the country was to obtain a better quality of life: slowing down to smell the roses; taking deep breaths of truly fresh air; balancing the fast pace of contemporary life with the backdrop of beauty provided by Mother Nature.
We are all very busy people, even up here! But the natural beauty of the Hills never fails to take my breath away. Every time I head north on Airport Road and round the curve to descend into Hockley Valley I find myself in great awe.
My favourite view is in the spring, just as the trees are about to burst with the new leaves. There is this brilliantly fresh lime-green hue that blankets the horizon, often accentuated with the majestic blues of the skyline. I can never get enough of that valley view, at any time of the year.
However, I must admit it took me about two years to “walk the talk”. My first lesson in country living was receiving two back-to-back speeding tickets – on the Town Line – where I live. They were quite the humbling experience. From then on, I obeyed the speed limits, everywhere! And with that I began to see things I had never seen before: a new home under construction, a fallen tree, the riot of colourful wildflowers on the roadside. Wow. All because of slowing down.
Instead of turning on the air conditioning, I opened my car windows more often. The aroma of the pines and cedars was too delicious to ignore. Then I began to see trails and parks and paths to explore. Hummm. There really is something to this slowing down.
The third thing that reminded me to spend more time actually looking and not just “passing by” was on my own property. Trees we planted over 10 years ago that I believed would never amount to much in my lifetime have since acquired significant height and stature! I mean we planted 18-inch sticks in the ground! This year we took a tree off the property to act as our Christmas celebratory monument. It was turned into mulch at Mono’s Winterfest and returned as compost for my garden. Talk about the circle of life!
All that being said, I hope you will all take the time to slow down. In life and on the road. A man and his dog were recently “clipped” in the village of Hockley by a driver who was not only speeding but didn’t even realise he/she had hit anyone. The OPP have been in the village with radar and have made some notable nabs, expensive ones! I walk the Town Line, the gravel portion, and I’m often pelted with flying stones from drivers who are traveling way too fast for the conditions.
We live in an area of blind hill tops, wildlife and somewhat urbanized communities. Let’s think about the upside of slowing down and adding a few more seconds to our travel time. Quality of life is only achieved when we are living. If we all start with that perspective, then aren’t we all that much more ahead of the curve?