We “nested” in a no-wifi cabin over the New Year. Situated above the confluence/convergence of two singing mountain streams, the little place invited rest and retreat.
The “silent sound” of the river sauntered into our dreams, then a New Year’s Eve saunter through the nearby Joyce Kilmer Memorial Forest and a short drive and walk on the Cherohala Skyway. Gifts of the Appalachian season at every turn and step.
The New Year brought us home on a meaningful and memorable drive over Snowbird mountain following one route of the Cherokee Trail of Tears. Robbinsville to Andrews. The sad and tragic legacy of capturing and relocating families from their ancestral lands in 1838. We paid honor and respect at the grave of the Cherokee leader Junaluska and his wife Nicie. We stopped briefly at a waterfall that might have refreshed the terrorized refugees crossing the rugged mountains. A moment of reflection for the brave Tsali in Bryson City.
There comes a deep sense of shame at what our foreparents and our nation did to the people of the First Nations.
A natural, meditative beginning to another year.
May it be one with less fears and less tears.