We have been talking about exploring some other areas of Wisconsin. Since we were already off the peninsula to take care of some errands in Green Bay ( yep, we drive about an hour to get to the closest stores, ) we went in search of bright fall colors on the backroads of our new state.
The weather was balmy and not as chilly as we expected, so we spent the day driving along roads with few cars, near trees that called out for pictures. We drove and stopped, drove and stopped.
We found color.
And babbling brooks
and covered bridges
and banks of red sumach.
What luxury to take a day driving back roads, to stop and bask in swirling leaves among a stand of aspens.
We are still new to this retirement life, and it is taking a while to not feel guilty or over-indulgent about spending a day to just look at beauty.
On the flip side, I recently watched the following Sara Groves video, and it was a nice counterbalance to this feeling of guilt about the way I am spending my time. She argues ( as many other creative people have also done) that the best way to be creative is to carve out time and space to be contemplative, away, not-busy. “Extravagance and wastefulness,” she says, can even be necessary.
We haven’t figured out all the pieces of life in this new place. Who will be our friends? Who will be our pastor, our dentist, our car mechanic? Will we have new passions and interests, and where will we give our time? And just how will we do when the dark of winter comes for 16 hours a day?
But this I know: the beauty of this place is like manna. I eat it everyday, and it makes me know that God is feeding me. So for now, at least, I will feast on the beauty and be glad.