The trees were tall along the trail, at least twenty-five meters above us. In places, they swayed in the breeze, lacking the support of a thick forest.
We heard a creak on occasion, as wood scraped over wood high above us on both sides of the trail. As my husband and I walked along this trail, it became a walk down memory lane.
This location was the trail to the beach at the National Park at Cavendish, Prince Edward Island. We’d had lunch at Cavendish Grove and decided to explore an area of the park we had yet to visit.
This trail goes through a mixed forest where the autumn colour was still present above us,
but the accumulation below was well underway. To the left, through the trees,
we saw a pond, probably once an inlet of the Gulf of St. Lawrence. The sand dunes are high between the pond and the beach now.
At a viewing area along the trail, one can see through to the beach in one place,
watch the cormorants to the left in the pond and the black ducks, on the right. My husband and I pause to take in the scene. The voices of the ducks are part of the symphony of this place.
But the best part was provided by the aspens,
and their distinctive tremble in the wind,
a sound I knew well from my childhood. Our walk continued with stories of my grandparents in Maddox Cove, Newfoundland, where I spent many summers as a child.
My grandparents’ home was surrounded by aspens on three sides. On summer nights, the open windows enabled the tremble of leaves to lull me to sleep. That sound is implanted in my brain and conjures up thoughts of safety, comfort, the carefree times filled with childhood innocence and fun.
That day we were 1500 kilometers, two ferry rides and more than fifty years away from Maddox Cove. However, as we walked that trail, my grandparents were with us. The experience was a reminder of how we carry our loved ones with us wherever we go.