Saturday, August 28, 2010

A Weekend Trip to the Inland

Over the weekend, our unquenchable wanderlust sent us hitting the road again. This time, my hubby and I headed to a small community, called Storuman, which is also a popular place for the fishing enthusiasts. We took the  route via Lycksele, also a famous tourist destination  in the north of Sweden, and headed westward deep into the inland.

Being a travel buff, I felt my whole being ablaze with excitement, hope and anticipation for the new things that might be added to my thickening file of travel memories. Once again, I would step on new soil, enjoy the sights of new scenery and be awash with the magical air that nature breathes out in that place.

We set forth from Umeå at 1 p.m. Saturday and traversed a distance of 230 km to our destination. The weather was unfavorable, with dark thick clouds hanging low and rain gently pounding on our car. But that didn't thwart my pleasure of traveling.  En route, we drove past some little communities and villages and immense tracts of forests and farmlands, which cover most of the country's land area. As we traveled on, my eyes remained wide open, devouring all the idyllic cycloramas that surrounded us, and painting them in my mind. Sometimes, I would snap photos of landscapes from our speeding car whenever I had the chance.

We stopped off somewhere in Lycksele for a brief rest. We took a look at a restaurant with an ethnic architecture and an old hotel.

As we moved on, I spotted these lake scenes by the roadside.

We reached the town of Storuman at around 4 p.m. We bought sandwiches from a grocery and headed up to a hill where we could eat our food. I kept wondering why we must go up there to eat when we could just pull over in a corner for a while and eat. He only said,  "You'll see." Then it dawned on me that perhaps, there's a nice view up there. So we drove up the hill and stopped before a wooden platform with semi-spiral staircases. As I got out of the car, I asked, "Where's the view?" to which he replied, "Look back."

When I did, I let out an audible gasp and an exclamation of elation at seeing this breath-taking lake scene below us. We mounted the flights of stairs to the view deck erected especially for viewing that panorama, and I took these photos.

After devouring our sandwiches, we moved on to the camping site where we booked a little cottage days earlier from the internet.

That was the only available cottage that time, and all the others were occupied. As soon as we deposited our things inside, we immediately proceeded to a nostalgic lake where my hubby would have a tryst with the past. This was where he used to fish many years ago. We had to drive a few kilometers  and then walk through a forest in order to get to this lake.

A few boats lay there along the bank of the lake waiting for voyagers to set them gliding across the lake.  We unlocked one and hopped in. We took turns paddling to the middle of the lake where we lingered for quite some time. While there, I felt the stillness and the peace of the surrounding wrapping me up, the sensation of which made me feel lighthearted. I feasted my eyes on the evergreen trees that surrounded the lake, their reflections dancing across the glassy water. I peered down at the cloudy sky that the water painted over its surface.  I listened to the sound of waters splashing against our boat. Everything felt magical for me, the sensations unfamiliar in my earlier existence. I relished the moments of togetherness with my hubby and being hugged by the beauty and serenity of nature.

When we got back to the camping site, I proceeded straight down the lake just a few steps away from our cottage. Again, nature had a big surprise for me there. The sun had started its descent to the horizon. The water was so calm that it sharply reflected the surrounding vegetation.  Nature's mirror at its finest! I felt jubilant over this since it had been my dream to see and photograph a mirror lake, the likes of which never existed in the the country where I came from. And then I was  face to face with it. It was so marvelous that I couldn't help taking several photos from different angles.

We slept soundly that night in our snug  little cottage. The following morning, we decided to travel back home.

It was just a brief holiday but it had been a day full of excitement and wonder. A day when I and my hubby were embraced by the tender arms of nature. A day when I felt, as always, our Creator's great love palpitate through his marvelous creations, sending its invisible but heartfelt pulse to my soul.

A day that I will always cherish in my memory.