A yearly retreat to Shin Pond, Maine.
It was about a year since we first entered these sacred woods. So peaceful and relaxing that we had to take revenge a year later. Only three courageous knights survived last year’s excursion, but they are wise and recruit a fourth.
We set up camp in an old hunting cabin. No electricity. No plumbing. No other human being seen for days. We live off the land, and as much as we can carry from the grocery store. During the day, we grab 6-packs of ale and take to the canoes to tackle Upper Shin Pond’s mighty waters. Other stray houses can be seen planted around the lake, but human life is scarce. At night, with the day’s ale still fresh on our breath, we sit around a glowing orange fire and start another round of lagers. Unlike the previous visit, the moon is full and shines bright enough to drown out a majority of the stars. Planet Earth’s nightlight. It reminds us of the huge body of water that’s sitting right next to us. Back in the canoe, we quietly paddle out far enough and just stare. It feels like such an honor to witness something so serene. I don’t feel worthy of something so grand, but accept it just the same. We paddle back and rest up for tomorrow’s plundering.
A day trip to Baxter State Park offers long drives, good hikes, and natural water slides made from shallow flowing streams and large slick rocks. It is dangerous and unforgiving, but we are the gambling type. At dusk, we return to camp with skinned elbows, bruised knees, and no regrets.
I am extremely grateful to have experienced such a place. Thank you, Mr. S.