A much needed, pre-birthday mini-vacation to the mountains was exactly what the (holistic) doctor would have ordered for me last week and she would have been 110% right. Freedom Friday chick packed her bags and headed west for four days (the longest time I have ever been away from my pup-babies! Yikes!) and recharged and rebooted her heart and soul. There is so much truth behind the John Muir quote, “The mountains are calling, and I must go,” which now proudly adorns my LSAT study notebook. Being born 3 miles from the salt water beaches encircling Long Island and growing up only ever 10 minutes from the shore– sea-level defined– I find a sort of refuge and optimism in the high, ever sky-reaching, never ending Rockies. Don’t get me wrong, I love my home, Long Island, but the mountains will be my life’s eventual backdrop.
In a way, I look at the forests of the Rockies as representative of the amazing melting pot that is Long Island and my family and friends, though the individuals (trees in the case of the Rockies, people on L.I.) standing one next to another may look totally different, they all strive for the same basic goals in life: joy, success and a certain kinship to one another. I realized this while hiking to Emerald Lake with my best friend Tara and while hiking among hundreds of other families, couples, children, seniors, etc. I also realized how truly lucky we are to exist in a world that still cares enough about nature to conserve it for future generations. It is so easy to be disappointed in humans, to become disheartened at all that we as humans have done to harm other living things, but if you look around, you will see that we still love nature: we prefer to live on “tree-lined streets”; we love a home with a “beautiful view” or an apartment with direct access to nature trails. This warms me and comforts me as I think that we are perhaps not as shallow as we think of ourselves, and if we stop and listen to that “call” from the mountains once in a while, we could all have our faith a bit restored in humanity.
See below for a few photos of my amazing, rejuvenating weekend in Colorado where I stopped at a few delicious restaurants and had some vegan, and semi- and fully-allergen-free meals! YUM!
More Freedom Friday: Best Gluten Free Beer List
Related: Vegan in Paris: Restaurants and Cooking Guide
Photo: Kate Coffey