WYTHE CO., Va., October 23, 2012 — Natural beauty can lull its inhabitants. Even the most wide-eyed tree huggers can take nature’s beauty for granted when they see it every day. This past weekend, I took a ride around Southwest Virginia to take photos to remember this autumn by, and I was reminded just how special this place is.
However, it was not till I went up Big Walker Mountain and happened upon a retired couple from Memphis that I regained a true appreciation of nature’s bounty in Appalachia.
I was snapping pictures of the fall colors, pretty much just going through the motions. Next to me was this lovely couple taking it all in. After all, I see the gorgeous foliage every year without ever leaving my home.
We soon struck up a conversation about the peak time for seeing the leaves, and I guess they gleaned the fact that I lived in the area from our conversation.
One of them asked, almost reverently, “You live around here?” The tone of his question suggested I lived in Shangri-La, and it made me pause and think. The worshipful lilt in his voice woke me up and opened my eyes as wide as they should be when viewing such breathtaking natural beauty.
We would love to retire here,” they both said almost in unison. I just smiled and said, “We get that a lot around here.”
Then I thanked them for reminding me just how fortunate I am to call these mountains home. After all, it may not be Shangri-La, but I can see it in the distance from here.
I hope you enjoy the slide show as much as I did taking the photos.
This article is the copyrighted property of the writer and Communities @ WashingtonTimes.com. Written permission must be obtained before reprint in online or print media. REPRINTING TWTC CONTENT WITHOUT PERMISSION AND/OR PAYMENT IS THEFT AND PUNISHABLE BY LAW.