I find it interesting that I’ve chosen the tundra to represent Solitude, having just used a similar picture for ‘Bliss.’ You’d think that the two aren’t compatible. Isn’t the first impression of solitude isolation and loneliness?
The tundra is a place so silent your ears ring. There’s no rustle of leaves on a tree; no trees. No grinding crush of car tires on gravel; no cars. No almost audible rumble of a far off plane; no planes. With this silence comes a spiritual peace of mind.
Silence can be an aspect of solitude.
There’s silent on the tundra because no one’s here. My dogs and I are 100 miles north of the Arctic Circle and a two-hour hike off a 457 miles long gravel road.
There are few people in this area. Ironically, there are hundreds of bears and moose and caribou, but the animals won’t let themselves be seen. Here on this chain of mountain tops you can wander for days and see little wildlife. Don’t kid yourself, though, they are there.
We scan the distance trying to see a glimpse of movement but we see nothing. The dug up dirt, the fresh scat, and the newly laid foot print tell a different story, but we’ll play along and pretend that we are alone.
You don’t have to be alone to know solitude.
Two weeks later we’re in the Northwest Territories, 50 miles up another dirt highway. We set up camp down a winding dirt road knowing that no one will be passing by. Night is settling in and a light breeze gently rattles the camper’s windows. We feel safe and serene in our little home.