Yesterday I visited a wonderful house in the country. The old and new executive of the Canadian Embroidery Guild in Guelph had their annual joint meeting at the home of a member who lives as far away in the opposite direction as I do from Guelph. We drove the “back way” to Guelph, through sections of the Beverly Swamp ( shown above.) It is amazing what a difference those 100 kilometers to Elora make!
Situated among the rolling hills of drumlin deposits, and very close to the Grand River and the magnificent Elora Gorge, the field-stone house was built in 1880. Originally quite small, it has been respectfully modified over the years, with the original stonework retained as interior walls. What amazed me was the windows… beautiful large windows looking out over acres of farm land and a rustic garden… unencumbered by any sort of covering, except for translucent fabric blinds to control light in the kitchen.
Imagine… natural daylight, silence, privacy, and a family home filled with the treasures of a lifetime.
We can accomplish a sense of serenity in the way we organize our homes and our belongings, the way we interact with others and use our time and energy. But we have to do it deliberately, make it a priority, work at keeping urban noise and distraction at bay. Perhaps that is also true of those who live in a rural haven… but I suspect it is easier to draw strength and inspiration if you live surrounded by such natural beauty.
Several of my friends have summer cottages, but I hear them talk about long commutes, packing and unpacking, opening and closing the cottage, the work and responsibility of maintaining two properties, pumps and septic tanks, the noise and stink of the power boats, the tasks of hosting and entertaining weekend visitors. That is not for me. But an interesting old house in a lovely rural setting… now that sounds lovely.
I could go on talking about the good fellowship of interesting and intelligent women who share a common passion for fine needlework and fiber art, who read avidly, who are busily involved in their communities, who are excited about their lives. I could also talk about the mysterious ways that pot luck meals always seem, without prior organization or manipulation, to provide a balanced meal as well as a surprising feast.
It was a very good day.