Abiqua Falls · Abiqua Creek · Scotts Mills · Oregon · USA
As it is for most people, the start of a new year marks the apex of my hopes for the positive changes I'm anticipating ahead. But January 1, 2015 saw me seeking comfort in the arms of something familiar. On the tail end of another cold snap, I set my compass for Abiqua Falls, and so did a host of other people, I learned! Fortunately I was late in arriving, and the remaining afternoon crowd was exceedingly nice--a group of young adults who were celebrating the impending move of one among them to the Portland area from California by seeking out beauty and adventure in the form of Abiqua's icy-dicy scramble trail. If they ever needed an experience to cement the stark difference in climes between the two locations, this was it--it was bitingly cold in that swirling, misty amphitheater. Shooting was quite the challenge, with mist coating the lens whenever it was left unshielded and my painfully numbing fingers growing ever more clumsy by the minute. A slick coating of wet ice covered the rocks, and I was thankful to have my trusty Microspikes with me. I looked on with more than a little trepidation as some of the exuberant visitors braved climbing atop the slippery boulders to have their portraits taken with good ol' Abiqua. Fortunately, other than a few little slips here and there, there were no catastrophic tumbles, and everyone appeared to have a great time. On the way out, I introduced myself and tipped them off to my website. I have no idea if they'll follow through and actually look me up, but in case they do, Happy New Year to you (and thanks!)! And to the soon-to-be new Pacific Northwest transplant, best of luck to you as you embark on your next chapter in life.
And to all, let the symbolism of a change of calendar remind you of the positive changes we all can implement at any time of year. My wish for you is what it always is, regardless of what the calendar reads:
Peace on Earth.
Love without fear.
Do unto others as you'd have done to you.
Find spiritual renewal and energy in whatever form or forum works best for you--and respect the autonomy of others to do the same for themselves.
Choose the higher path, even though it may be harder.
Forgive yourself...you are human.
Forgive others...they are human.
Be good to one another....we are all human.
Happy New Year, everyone.