Tuesday, February 16, 2010

The Circle of Life

When I was a child, I wanted to go with him every chance I could.  I didn't care where we went, I just wanted to go.  One of my favorite places to go was out the long winding roads that eventually ended with smell of coal.  I loved when he would take me out to the mines.  It didn't happen often, but it was a treat each and every time.  I would beg him to take me.  It never dawned on me that this man might want to have a few moments of solitude.  I never once considered that he might not want to clean up the vomit that often times spewed all over his truck due to my chronic disease of car sickness.  When he began to take photos out in the woods, it was only natural for me to once again invite myself to be his shadow.  It was during those precious times that my love of the outdoors was sealed forever in my heart.   With camera bag on his shoulder and tripod in his hand, he would call, "Julie Bell, do you want to come along?"  I loved those times.  He would wander off taking pictures, and I would be allowed to discover the beauty that God had created in whatever area we happened upon for that day.  I knew that with one soft shout that he would be by my side if I needed him so I could relax and enjoy without having fear.  We spent many hours hiking and exploring the banks of the Green River or the beauty of the Falls of Rough.  We traipsed up and down areas of Western Kentucky that someday I would come to realize was my heritage.  He would teach me about the history of the mines and if I listened real close, he would share his memories with me. 
Those moments were always an adventure for me.  I never knew exactly where we would be going.  I just knew that I loved going.
That part of my childhood developed not only a love of the outdoors, but it also brought out my love of the old ways.  I loved finding old buildings or barns.  My favorite was an old church by the name of Hopewell Church.  It was a place that I could actually go into and sit on the pews and dream of the days gone by. 
Yesterday, I asked my own man child if he would like to accompany me to take some pictures.  I am still a little unsure of being in the woods alone.  That is one thing that I have never outgrown.  He smiled and said, "That sounds like fun, Momma."  We left in his truck with my camera bag slung over my shoulder.  He asked me where I wanted to go, and he maneuvered the icy roads with great caution.  We spent the afternoon enjoying the beauty of the outdoors while I told him stories of me being a child doing this same thing with his Papaw.  This man child loves old barns too.  He was quick to point out places that he saw as beautiful.  We laughed and promised each other that we would do this again in spring.  We would carve out his heritage right here in our mountains of East Tennessee.

grace and peace,


Carmen S. said...

What a lovely post Julie! it's great that you have such wonderful childhood memories and that your young men can enjoy some of the same things you did:) I love old barns, churches, anything with a history:)

TX Doodler said...

Wow, Julie, what a beautifully written post! I could smell the woods & almost see the sights you were talking of. What a great memory & special way to recapture it with your own son. Just blown away by the beauty & poetry of your day! Guess what, I was taking photos of old wind mills & deserted cotton farms today!! I love 'em & dream of the people & lives that once lived there. (Mine were only glimpses on my IPhone. I'm still saving up for a decent camera.) Thanks for sharing....

TnFullQuiver said...

Carmen C and Texas Doodler,
Thank you both kindly. Hope you are enjoying your winter days!
grace and peace,

Julie said...

Hey Julie, I think the old buildings are beautiful too!! The old house with the brick chimney is my Great Great Uncle, Dolfus Southerland. My parents now own it and the land around it. The house across the road was my mamaw's. Sadly it is no longer in our family though. Glad to keep some of my grandmother's land in our family!! I am so happy you enjoy the view!
Julie Kinser

TnFullQuiver said...

I was so surprised that the land belongs to your parents. As I was taking the pictures, I was laughing with Josh and hoping that nobody would shoot me. Some people don't think highly of having their propery photographed by strangers!!! That property is so beautiful, Julie. I love the lay of the land. Thank you so much for taking the time to let me know a little history of it. Hope you all are doing well!
grace and peace,

Unknown said...

brought tears to my eyes! the picture of your son's back reminded me of my son.the summer he "rescued" me (single parent i am) after 3 simo hurricane's in direct path and house. he let me cry over all the trees/woods/"stuff" we lost because he too loved those woods! helped manuever me over fallen trees/logs. he was 30, wow,