Wednesday, 24 March 2010

Out on the Boardwalk

Last year at about this time I spent a short time in a cabin in some woods in Minnesota.
Seeing that Minnesota is called "The Land of Ten Thousand Lakes" it was no surprise that there was a lake amongst the woods in this beautiful place. There was only one point of access to the lakeside, and that was a boardwalk which went out from between the trees onto the lake. At the end of it was a small platform just large enough to seat one.
As the boardwalk was a popular place to sit and enjoy the solitude there was a rope cordon to be placed across the entrance to warn others off once you set out on it. Every time I walked through the trees near the boardwalk that rope would be up and I would imagine the lucky person beyond it sitting listening to the lapping waters of the lake.
Sometimes as I walked the prairie back to my cabin I would see somebody heading purposefully towards the particular path through the trees that led to the boardwalk and I just knew that they were on a mission to get beyond that rope and make it to the lakeside. Despite the acres of trees which ensured silence and solitude a-plenty it seemed that the boardwalk was something special in this already special place.
Because I didn't want to miss out I found my own path kept leading me back to the boardwalk more frequently as the time for my departure came nearer.
Of course my moment came and I got to set out on the boardwalk. I must say that my first sight of the end of the walk looked as idyllic as I had imagined it would be. There was a lovely wrought iron chair set out to sit on, and even a small table beside it, with the open view of the lake all around. The nearer I got however, the more I found the walkway wallowing alarmingly under my feet, and the whole platform sitting very low in the water. Additionally the hot afternoon sun had brought the snakes out to bask in the trees behind me and before my backside hit the seat I knew this was not the place for me.
I tried it. I really did. For, oh all of two minutes I should say.
I won't insult you with all the lessons of the boardwalk.
You were probably way ahead of me on this one anyway, but the biggy for me was finding yet again that the place that's right for others isn't necessarily going to be right for me. No matter how much I might have wanted it to be, or even felt that it should have been, that particular place in the sun wasn't for me.

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