Ten Days in Woodbourne
Today I can finally think about those ten days. Those moments, I have tried to save in dozens of pictures. Indeed, the most important impressions of each place are impossible to capture. Places like that have soul and heart... Houses built of mother's cares and father's work. A kindness and love you feel like a warm embrace. Outside, beneath the ice of winter, lay the trails, overgrown, and rugged, heavy with the adventures experienced by young children from springs long ago.
"I would like to see the place you grew up," I told to Chris once (without believing it would actually happen) while he showed me pictures of the snow in his backyard. And the first time I saw snow in my life, it was not disapointing to me, not even for a second. Actually, we did not have the best moment when I was snowboarding for the first time, and, I have to thank Mohib, for all the patience and support (love you, bro! it was a pleasure to meet you and Julia!) Nevertheless, in the end the snow was exciting, just how I knew it would be.
On our way from the airport, when we almost got to Woodbourne, Kristty was talking something about the problems in the town or the commerce, how that area was getting uninteresting. I tried to pay attention and converse, but I was hypnotized by the landscapes. In the first part of the trip, in New York city, Allan talked about streets, bridges, parks, etc. I was really interested, because I know cities and I love the urban life. But upstate NY touched me in a very particular way. The little routes, the old buildings, rivers and bridges, the lonely houses without neighbors covered in white... In California, Cheyenne told me, that I would possibly be disapointed to know the place that they came from. How she could think something like this? I was completly in love and literally I had no words. Curious about what kind of life, what kind of stories those towns could have to tell. It's my favorite thing... Imagine the stories behind the walls, between the trees.
I think when I said to Chris, "I would like to see your place," what I meant was, "I would like to see your memories," which is convenient, because he doesn't talk much. And all of that region was full of memories. It seemed, actually, that the cities were frozen in the past, practically nothing looked new on the way, which, to me, made everything even better.
As I said, the snow, was the high point, and my biggest expectation. I had some expectations about Tango too, but in a completely different way, haha! but he is a nice dog and we are ok now. I realized also, that much more significant than the snow, were all the things touched by it. It's funny, how the winter can create this aura of peace and mystery. But soon I would know the more important thing, and what this and all the other places are really about: the people.
I had met Kristty and Allan, months earlier when they visited Chris and Cheynne and I knew for sure that they would be good people just like my friends are, but they are even better than I thought, it's hard to describe them and almost impossible to explain how welcome they made me feel since the first minute. I am really lucky to have met them!
Every family has their own dynamic, but the special thing in particular about this family is how able they are to extend the love for those who love their sons. All I can do, is to say thanks again and let them know the feeling is reciprocated.
We had conversations and did things with the family and also did nothing (something that I am learning to apreciate) especially me and Taylor, the little brother. It's kind of easy to feel good having a conversation or doing some activity, but you have to be in higher level to be able to not say or do anything and still be comfortable, and we got there, boy! But to play cards was our favorite thing. We were addicted. I miss you already! I hope when your brother and sister in law come to Brazil, you decide to come with them.
Probably this text is not what Poppy was hoping for, when he asked me to write about Woodbourne, but how could I do otherwise? Woodbourne to me is Shane and Dean. Liberty is Mohib and Júlia. Ellenville is Connor, the first guy I met there (he deserves a full chapter), and...where is Lane from?? I have no idea, but he owes me a goose t-shirt (F**** nerd). As I said before, the place won me over, but with the people, I just fell in love. I can say was one of the happiest encounters of my life. To me this means a lot, because I am not that young, I have hundreds friends, met so many amazing people during all this years but in Upstate NY I felt a very special connection. Although it was fast, it was big and significant. Who knows... maybe I could see everyone again. Estephen I will certanly see, cause he will be famous. He has charisma, a vibe thet will lead him right to the top. I bet all my money on it. Did I forget to mention someone?! Oh, yeah! My favorite bro, Díon. I can't wait to have you here, buddy! I will show the best of Cali, I'll keep some empty bottles for you fill up with pee and convert centimeter to inches just for you to understand my d*** size. Promise you. I am so sorry, it would be necessary to write a book to talk about everybody the way I would like. Sorry for this text that is already too big, but I would feel bad if I dont talk about the "mini Cheyenne," Dallas, so sentimental, beautiful and sweet as the original one, and her mother, Georgianna, that discovered my biggest talent: I am such a good hugger, a professional (hahaha!!), thank you for the hospitality and for the beers! Dont let me forget to send a brazilian spoon to your mom! Sorry Poppy, maybe in the future if I join my memories with some research I could show you something nice. Like a gift for you and Grandma that was so kind. I know that you lived a good life by the peace in your home and the virtues of your family. I can imagine how proud you both are.
I have to finish this right now. I would like to have more time to write these words and more words to describe these feelings. Unfortunately, this, I dont have. But I will always carry with me this happy feeling that I could have loved these friends, I could have lived in this house, I could have been part of this family ... and I think I was, for a while, and I am glad for this. And when I go back to my life, to my friends, to my place, I will talk about the frozen waterfall, the lakes that you can walk upon, the submerged city beneath the reservoir, the deer ( I just saw three)... I will talk about the woods, rivers and trails... I'll talk about the little cities and the big old houses... the abandoned playground covered in snow, the little routes and villages that look like fairy tale scenes, the sunset on the hills and the last christmas lights adorning the house... But above all of it, I will talk about the people that I met and the friends that I made.
Everybody was telling me that I should've have seen the place in the spring or in the summer or even in the fall. I dont think so. I can imagine how beautiful all those places should be in other seasons, but I like my memories the way they are. I wont change nothing!