A Mountain Picnic Takes on New Meaning
As our country is in crisis and the global community struggling, we are in a part of the country that seems to belong to another world. Another place. What better time for reflection?
My husband and I headed off in search of a spot for tranquility and a mountain picnic. It was a perfect day and an escape from watching the devastating news cycle of the week.
Temps were in the low 60s and the air was cool and crisp, with low humidity, as we rolled down our Jeep windows and drove along winding country roads in Western North Carolina’s Watauga and Avery Counties. There was very little traffic.
Everywhere we looked the trees were sprouting bright green leaves of new growth. The sun was bright and only an occasional wisp of a cloud broke the palette of the Carolina-blue sky. Due to recent rains, everything seemed hyper-clean and some homeowners were spending the afternoon tackling the tall uncut grass. I love the smell of freshly mown grass.
As is typical in this area, we passed lots of barns, old tobacco barns, many leaning precariously. We saw cows, and a lone ram perched on a boulder, surveying his farm. The light breeze made the rustling leaves shimmer as if with silver-backs and songbirds broke the silence. Eventually, we reached our destination, Buckeye Lake on the back of Beech Mountain.
As we enjoyed our picnic on a shiny green bench at the end of a short dock, we watched five distant fishermen with lines bobbing in the lake. A futile effort for most, since Covid-19 complications have prevented the restocking of trout. But no one seemed to mind. The breeze rippled across the water and schools of minnows positioned themselves facing into the current. We sat and just watched.
How could it be this calm and beautiful with so much strife in our country?