In one week J and I will be camping in Duck Creek, Utah, for our annual Durfee-Van Leuven Reunion. This is a reunion and a time I look forward to all year. When I’m having a crappy day, students are restless and unwilling to listen, husband is in a bad mood, sons are bratty, house is a mess, or I’m just overwhelmed with too much going on, I think about the mountain.
My mom’s family has been meeting at Cedar Mountain for generations. So while a reunion may not sound like much fun to some of you (hint: Steven J), it’s a tradition for us. For one weekend a year we meet and catch up, take walks, tell stories, sing, eat, and play games. It's a chance to camp out, trailer it or cabin it, depending on your finances, and enjoy family we never see.
But it's not just the reunion that pulls me to Duck Creek. This mountain flows through my blood and my memories. Growing up, my brothers and sisters and I spent a major part of every summer on the mountain. As our parents and grandparents built our family cabin, we built forts, hiked roads and trails, played, walked, and ran like wild children through the hills and streams. It's a sacred place where we've brought our friends, as well as future husbands and wives, and was a significant part of the healing process after my divorce.
So in a week, (just one week!) when I’m reading in my camping lounge chair, or roasting smores over an open fire, or visiting with family, and all the while smelling fresh, cool mountain air, viewing green trees, and clear streams, know I will have found my peace this year, at last.
Photo credits: Corrina Terry, 2009.