Thursday, November 29, 2018

Last Friday, Joe and I were in West Virginia, and we drove up I-79 from my parents' in Huntington to visit my grandparents in Morgantown. As we were driving up (when you're going north on 79, it's indeed driving "up" and not "down") those familiar roads which I have driven countless times in my life, I was once again reminded how much I love the mountains. (As if I could ever forget.) I looked over at Joe and said, "These mountains are safe. Flat, open land makes me scared. These mountains make me feel protected and safe."

I took this photo on I-79 a few years back.

And they do. They always have.

If you know what I mean, you know what I mean. And if you don't know what I mean, I don't think I can explain it. Truly, the only thing about living in Georgia that's remotely familiar is the stretch of the Appalachians you can view in the northern part of the state.

When I think of the word "mountains," three things come to mind. It won't be at all surprising to those who know me that all three things come from my first great love, The Sound of Music.

In the song "The Sound of Music," Maria sings:

I go to the hills when my heart is lonely. 

When she's talking with the Reverend Mother, who is concerned that Maria ran off and told her she might get lost up in the mountains, Maria says:

That's my mountain. I was brought up on it.

And when Captain von Trapp, Maria, and their children are fleeing the abbey to escape the Nazis, the Reverend Mother reminds Maria:

I life thine eyes unto the hills, from which cometh my help.

(Okay, that last one is scripture. But I first learned it on The Sound of Music!)

Just today, my sister Erin posted this on Facebook:

It comes from an article called "In the Heart of Trump Country" that was published in The New Yorker.

Erin (who now lives in North Carolina) posted it with this comment:

This is exactly it. I miss the West Virginia Hills. 

To which I, of course, commented:


I also reposted her post. As of now, Erin's original post has received many likes from people who live in West Virginia, as well as West Virginians who now live elsewhere. My repost received the exact same reactions.

The mountains are safe. The mountains are the place that raised me.

The mountains are home.

montani semper liberi

I stole this picture from the West Virginia Division of Tourism. Please don't be mad WVDT. I love you!

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