Exhausted, in the best possible way, the campfire draws everyone together. It is the source of heat and comfort, coffee and food and companionship and conversation. Everyone gathers around, for campfire cures.
As horse-outfitters in the remote mountains of Alaska, we live an outdoor lifestyle. Living in a fly-in area, year round with our children, dogs, horses and responsibilities of operating and running an Outdoor Recreation business as well as being on of the only state approved Professional Guide Training Programs in Alaska, is a busy life. We work really hard. It isn’t something often thought of and rarely acknowledged.
When the Team finishes unloading, unsaddling, hobbling and belling the horses and sending them out to graze for the night, they wander over to the fire. Hot water for hot-chocolate, coffee and mugs unpacked, firewood and water are my first priorities, after I unsaddle my own horse and check him all over. Most often, dark is coming fast if it hasn’t already fallen and everyone is tired.
Re-hashing the day, sharing past experiences and solving the world’s biggest problems is all accomplished around the campfire. Philosophical debates and future plans are all discussed, argued and planned, deals are made and lifelong friendships are forged.
The campfire burns away disagreements and brightens the shadows that cloud the mind from the day’s work, with its light.
The fire warms a soul as easily as it warms the exposed skin of hands held close the the flickering flames. The dance of the changing petals of light mesmerizes and relaxes, through magic of its own.
As the wood burns and the wind blows, pictures revealed in the flames seem to ask and answer questions in my own heart.
The smell of the campfire soothes away troubles and worries. It is an elixir to rest with. The sounds are the oldest, most natural sounds to beacon you to come closer and listen.
The campfire cures.