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Comfort Station

By
The Comfort Station
My eyelids lift and the sun starts to peek over the hills soon the sun and I are staring at one another, now both awake. Upon stepping outside my feet are instantly soaked from the morning dew. I feel the crisp air as the cool wind whips through my hair and as I pause for a moment in front of our sign that reads 'comfort station,' a gust of wind picks up blowing in whispers of the past. Continuing on my walk I descend slowly near the pond and cautiously turn over the rusty red boat. The weighted clunk of the boat slices the silenced air. Using all the morning energy I can muster, I am finally ready to push the boat into the still water. The journey has only just begun.
Cutting across the pond I can hear the symphony of the early morning birds as I disturb their morning chatter. I paddle through the dark water and feel as if I am moving through thick, smooth paint. Stroke by stoke I determinedly reach for the other side. The rhythm of the water sinks me into a trance. I see the cabin begin to shrink and by the time I reach the middle of the pond it is a blended blur among the walls of yellow, orange, and red shaded trees. The wind begins to blow stronger, casting me slowly but assuredly in circles. The gust steals my breath and the sharp ripples of the water cause my head to spin. Round and round I turn. I decide to let go and give in to the winds request. Carefully I lie down in the boat and look up to the picture perfect blue sky. Soon the moments of camp begin swirling in my memory. Like a broken dam a pool of memories pours inside my mind flooding my imagination and I begin to hear the laughter that filled the air last summer.
The years of my life turn like pages in a book and each visit to camp is like marking the next chapter of my life. I have three sisters, and as you can imagine in a large family, there are always new characters around and fresh ideas happening. Last year was special because my sister Amie and I shared an experience on this pond. Looking for adventure she and I kayaked around this pond, but in the process we determined our futures. We floated in the middle of the pond stranded from the outside world. The hills and trees surrounding the area had created a perfect hiding spot. It was as if we were playing hide-and-go-seek with the rest of the world, but no one would ever find us. Like two little girls in a fort of blankets we hid away and dreamed. That starry night on the pond was especially comforting because each star dotted one of our dreams and there was a sky filled with them. We reached for the stars and soon succumbed to the silence of satisfaction that drew our breaths into deep thoughts.
Amie's vibrant red hair beamed in the moon light, gleaming in a manner reminiscent of her zesty passion for life. The moon highlighted Amie's expressive face as she asked me what my life goals were. I took a moment to consider an answer; what do I want to do with my life? My deep thoughts created silence and the only noise at that moment was the sound of waves unabashedly splashing against the kayak. No more words were formed by Amie and me as we listened in silence. I turned back to look Amie in the eye but there she was head thrown back, eyes closed, with a face dressed in peace. Hoping not to disturb her I remember suggesting in a calm voice 'I want to live at camp. I need its comfort because all I really want in life are simple goals such as teaching, growing, and learning.'
Amie slowly began to lift her head and I saw the ideas glow from the green brightness of her eyes. With no hesitation she grinned and excitedly shouted ' Erin , we need to write a book about camp, about us four sisters.'
I nodded my head in a promise. Looking up at the starry night I could see the pictures of my future dancing in the sky. We were floating on the waters of possibility, we were breathing the air of dreams, and we were feeling the comfort of camp. I imagined us in the future sitting by the blazing camp fire both sipping our cups of coffee with piles of paper covering a table. I could see Riley lazily lounging by the nearest rock next to the 'Comfort Station' sign. The fire would crackle startling me as I hastly scribbled notes to the next chapter of our book. I could see me scunched up in blankets with hardly enough room to move as I attempted to jot down the ideas that soared left and right.
I will always remember this fabulous fairy tale night because it relates to us four sisters. We have created our own world at camp, keeping us separate from the outside world. Out in the real world there's endless opportunity but not always enough comfort. Camp revives the magic within us establishing hopes and dreams, and the moments shared create happy memories that last forever. Right now I'm here, in the middle of the pond, and the boat is floating along as my mind mixes with the stirring water. The sun is in full view and the wind is unwinding. It's time for me to paddle back to camp and enjoy another day at the 'comfort station'.





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