I wonder how I’m going to remember places. And then I wonder whether it really matters. I’d like to live so mindfully that my present is always more of my focus than my past, that instead of trying to remember where I was at X date of years gone by, I’m always appreciating where I am.

That said, Aux Arc is the sound of trains rumbling by and Canadian geese murmuring.

Canadian geese and goslings

For some reason, when I arrived here last Friday, I paid for a full week’s stay. I didn’t know how I was going to feel about the campground, but I’d had a chance to drive through before picking a site, so I knew that at least I had a water view. And maybe I knew that I was getting sick. I definitely knew I was tired.

campsite at Aux Arc

As it turned out, my campsite was a peaceful place in which to be miserable. Not good for the writing, unfortunately. All my good intentions of progress on Grace turned into staring at the blank screen for a while and then going back to sleep. I wrote a few hundred words here and there, but mostly they went nowhere.

But I’d like to not remember this place as a place where I was miserable. It deserves better. It’s green and quiet and still and even though trains rumble by and barges drift down the river, I could easily imagine myself staying here happily for another week or even longer. It’s not wilderness, but it’s spacious nature. (Also a serious bargain — with an America the Beautiful pass, campsites are half price, so I’m paying $9/night for electricity, water, and a water view.)

But my time is up tomorrow, my tanks are full, my fridge is empty, and I have weekend plans. And then next week, it’s back to Florida. R texted me yesterday to let me know that he’d passed his thesis exam: it wasn’t a surprise, but I found myself unexpectedly teary with pride. I want to go back in time and tell the self that was agonizing over whether to try yet another new school to relax and just do it. And then in three weeks, I will get to watch him graduate from college: I suspect I should bring tissues.