What is one place in the world where you feel totally at peace?
Both heels of my four-year-old, worn out, hand-me-down tennis shoes were propped up on the tree branch in front of me. In my lap, I held the seventh book in the Series of Unfortunate Events, and a half-empty bottle of water was buried in the leaves somewhere down below me. It’s dusk and through the rest of the woods, I could see the glint of light bouncing off the lake that’s just over the hill. I heard my mom call my name and I quickly shuffled down out of the tree I had been reading in all afternoon.
I raced back towards our home and my brother and sister were sitting around the fire eating dinner already. My mom was bent over the flames pulling out my food. We were having mountain pies – a campfire delicacy – again. It’s the middle of summer and the temperatures inside our house peak above 100. Without air conditioning in there, we would have been fools to heat up the propane stove and make it even hotter when we could cook just as well outside. That house was lacking a lot. We didn’t have air conditioning. That’s because we didn’t have electricity. We also didn’t have indoor plumbing, except for one shower that worked maybe a third of the time and a kitchen sink that was smaller than most of our plates.
It wasn’t always...
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