Wednesday, March 25, 2009


This is actually a sign that has been on the road for as long as I can remember. I think someone has painted it yellow in the last year or so but it is still there on the road.

When we first moved here over 35 years ago from the Bay Area, we thought it was great that we lived so close to a lake. Little did we know that it was just an over-sized pond once we started looking for it. It is actually a reservoir for the water supply and used to be a great place to hang out when we first moved here.

When we first moved here we were in our early 20's, had just bought a piece of property without power, phone, or well and were determined to "live off the land". We arrived in our 1949 International school bus that had been converted into a "motor home". We didn't know any better at the time and thought we really had it made. We were happy to tote our water, to use kerosene lamps at night for light, and use an out-house. We soon drilled a well so the toting water part ended but it was about a year before we actually started building our home.

We were "hippies" I guess you could say. We were the only ones out of our entire group of friends who actually took the leap and decided to quit our jobs, move away from home and our ties to family and friends, and go off seeking something that was more important to us at the time: peace AND quiet. We had survived the 60's and the Viet Nam war and decided we wanted nothing to do with society and it's ills. We wanted to "tune in and drop out". And, that is exactly what we did. It was great and felt so rebellious and "right" (actually left!!).

Things have changed dramatically for us since then although I think that some of our friends still view us as "different". We aren't concerned with latest fashions, we don't spend lots of money on things we don't need, we work around our house most days but don't consider it work. But we have all the amenities that go along with raising children and buying back-in to society's commercialism. We have a remodeled kitchen complete with granite counter-tops and stainless steel appliances. We drive modern vehicles and have sold the 1949 International school bus although my husband still "looks" for it along the roads, hoping in the back of his mind that he may find it again some day. Nostalgia I guess. But, you can never go back.

GREENWOOD--BEYOND COOL is an actual bumper sticker that someone came up with and every once in awhile you will see a car around here with it stuck to the bumper. It says it all though: We live in Greenwood which is about 8 or 10 miles down Highway 193 past the town of Cool. Yes, Cool! It is a one-street town. It has a gas station, a fire station, a market, hair salon, deli, real estate offices, and a few other stores. Greenwood, on the other hand, is also a one-street town but there is really NO town. About the only thing you can buy in Greenwood is a drink at the local bar because Greenwood only consists of a local bar and the post office. That's it!!!

It also says that Greenwood is a great place to retire and it is also a pretty COOL place to live. It is actually BEYOND COOL if there really is such a thing. I love the sound of the word GREENWOOD. It sounds good. It conjures up good images. It is where I feel most comfortable and where I can live in PEACE AND QUIET. I can go to bed at night and hear the sounds of frogs croaking in the pond. I can turn off my lights at night and see millions of stars, not obscured by street lights or high-rises, or neighbors all around me. Living on 8.5 acres of land in the "middle of nowhere" has it's benefits.

I guess we knew what we were doing when we left the Bay Area all those many years ago. I am happy that we didn't get stuck in a place that we wouldn't want to be most often; a place crowded with people and cars. We were lucky: when we came home on Friday nights after a long work week, were were happy to be in a place that we didn't feel the urge to leave. Sometimes it is more quiet here than most places we go on vacation.

We don't go to Greenwood Lake anymore. They have taken all the picnic tables away and have basically blocked it off. is good to know that the sign is still there, pointing the way towards home and BEYOND! That's PRETTY COOL!!!


  1. sounds like a really lovely place to call home — peaceful and quiet like the surroundings here in western mass (though i get very restless for the city at times).
    there's a summer music camp nearby called "greenwood" and on sunday evenings the kids give recitals that are open to the public. inside the recital hall it's stuffy and hot, but sitting on the lawn outside and listening to the music through the open windows, beneath the stars, is ideal.

  2. I love where I grew up. This perfectly describes what it was like growing up there. No neighbors and we'd play outside ALL day until it got dark. Sometimes I wish my house was more know we're sort of in the country over there in Meadow Vista, but it's not the same. Maybe if you guys don't ever leave, Kim and I can keep the house as a vacation weekend home.


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