Characters in this blog:
Me: An optimistic, wine-loving mother of three rambunctious children, who sets them up with crayons on the office floor in an effort to find a little time to be a grown up and write this blog.
The Hubs: Husbands of said blog writer. Full time income-earner and honest-to-God Super Hero.
Little P: Vivacious eldest child, who wears her princess dress and high heels while she hunts for bugs in the mud.
Delux: Sweet replica of his father. Loves motorcycles and anything his sister does.
Baby M: the newest addition to the family. He enjoys long walks on the beach and shitting on his mommy.
About the name:
Girl from the North Country.
It may have a vaguely familiar twang to it because it is also the title of a Bob Dylan song. (I went down the rabbit hole looking for a link to this song so that those of you who are unversed in Dylan could check it out, as it has been covered by everyone from Crosby, Stills & Nash, The Black Crows, Lions and Joni Mitchell. I have to say one of my favorites is Eddie Vedder’s version. But here is the original.) There’s a rumor that the song is based in English music folk lore and that Dylan wrote it while traveling in Europe. It is said that the “north country” was free from development; a place where people were closer to one another, as well as with nature. But Dylan also grew up in Minnesota, where “north country” is referred to as the wilderness situated above the area where he lived in Duluth. To be honest, it doesn’t matter. For the purpose of the song, it was where his true love lived.
Anyone who knows me well will tell you that I have a Bob Dylan affliction. I believe that he is pure magic. And while I cannot pick a favorite song, this one strikes a particular note for me.
The idea of the north has a personal meaning; I grew up in Northern California, in a small town tucked in the foothills. This place is ingrained in me, as is the girl I was when I lived there. Although I am now in Southern California, the child within me will always be from the north of the state. The smell of the ocean and the feel of sand between my toes are my ambiances now. But I will never feel more at home than I do when I am standing small among the pine trees. I will always be most comfortable in boots and a flannel button-up, drinking beer in the hills. A part of me will always be the barefoot wild child, climbing rocks at the river and pretending to be Tiger Lily in my birthday suit.
This little valley is where I come from. I know that not everyone holds where they grew up so close to their heart, but this place is different. At least it is for me.
I am now an adult; a woman. My bare feet are no longer coated in dust and the only rocks I climb are ones created in reverie by my children. But no matter how far I go, or who I become, when I go home and run my fingers along the rough cobblestone of my youth, it feels as if the shadow of my younger self is peeking out through the branches and calling to me like a banshee, her sweet, shrill voice resonating within the deep canyons. And I like to think, that’s the way I remember her best.