The slogan for Corona beer is “Find your beach.”
It is a great slogan because it conjures up images and feelings of relaxation, serenity and freedom. Or, according to the TV program Ink Master, your “beach” is very personal and could be anything you want it to be from a concert to a town to architecture. A beach is symbolic of what fills your heart with joy and peace.
A friend invited me for lunch this week. I had a physio appointment that morning and even though I know it is going to eventually make me feel stronger and better, I know it hurts. I have to talk myself into it and brace myself before I go into the building because it hurts something awful in the beginning. An afternoon in the country helped get me through that appointment.
When I arrived potatoes were being dug from the garden planted by little hands. The heart of a farmer, caretaker of the earth, is being nurtured in another generation. Teaching one child at a time how to work and live with nature, supporting field to table production by example, is what will save our planet.
The potatoes were scrubbed, cut up and cooked for lunch. Home grown beef was fried up and served alongside a delicious cole slaw made from cabbages also grown in the garden.
We sat outside at a table in the shade of an old tree overlooking the farm. We helped ourselves from the cooking pots and feasted on the rewards of the earth shaped by sunshine, rain and hard work. A little butter and salt on the potatoes and all was perfect.
We talked of old times, good times, future times and difficult times. We laughed, we dreamed, we ate our fill. We savoured some store bought ice cream as cottony, frothy clouds drifted over the pasture behind the wooden fence posts. The cattle had found a nice shady spot under a stand of trees across the way but soft cow sounds were carried on the cooling breeze.
On a long low branch of the tree two swings were gently waving to a scattering of toys resting on the ground at the base of the old tree, just waiting to again be held in tiny, eager, innocent hands. A nearby apple tree was storing fresh snacks to nourish those same little farmers as they played.
It would be hard for me to think of another beach where I would want to be. The country calm soothes the soul. The peace of nature enhances ones faith. The bounty of the earth sustains the body. The joy of friends fills the heart.
What can I say, I am a farm girl at heart. It all took me back to a simpler, happy time. I grew up picking a plum from a tree or pulling a carrot from the garden when I needed a snack. I know the delight of playing in the dirt, swinging from a tree branch, splashing in the creek. We helped plant the garden, weed the garden and we picked vegetables for supper. We made pets out of the calves and piglets. We got awfully dirty in a day and were scrubbed briskly before bed.
Maybe we need more caretakers of the earth. Maybe our kids need less technology and more fresh, country air, more dirty hands, more time with us doing more nurturing and soothing of the soul, enhancing of faith and filling their hearts with love.