“Wood, sea, and hill were the intimacies of my childhood, and they have never lost their spell for me.” John Buchan, a Scottish novelist.
The hills of Dayton, Ohio, were a part of my childhood. Then, at ten years of age, the family moved to the flattest place I have ever lived, Miami, FL. It was so flat it had (has) a street system with numbers and letters that made MapQuest unnecessary. But oh how I missed those hills as a child, the views from them and towards them.
I suppose that is why I was enamored of California from the first time I saw the Rose Bowl, where the magnificent mountains covered the horizon. It is one of several reasons my wife and I have lived in Southern California these past 43 years.
However, Biscayne Bay and the Atlantic Ocean became my go-to places of serenity as a teen in Miami, now replaced in adulthood by the pacific Pacific. The majesty of those bodies of water, the variety of blues and greens across those waters, and the rare dead calm unstirred my soul.