The Bells of Beaver Lake, North Asheville

What calms you or buoys your spirit, when you’re agitated or thoroughly ‘down’?

***If this post brings forth a smile, I’ll have accomplished my goal.  If you share something back, we’re both the

Across from Beaver Lake, in North Asheville, there’s a house that sits atop a hill that is covered by vines, and on an eave of that house hang fat steel tubes (wind chimes) that clang deep, resonant sounds.

Much smaller brass chimes hang nearby.  They tinkle softly…

Together, they deliver a cacophony of hope, and I admit:  I needed it on this dark day.

Ominous thoughts pervade and I can’t shake despondency, for I’m at a crossroads. Sometimes, life smacks me down and forces me to confront my own reality.  It’s happened to me before.

I tell my husband I’ll jog with him, but I don’t really feel like it. My legs are heavy, and I lack commitment. I want very much to wallow in my own misery…

But I don’t.

I get out of the car and proceed to walk. He stays with me. A cool wind whips about, and I curse it, at first.  Then I realize:  It lifts me and refuses the normal order of things which sees my energy sapped in such circumstances.  You see, I suffer from MS. 

With this breeze, however, I feel lighter.

Coming upon two others who walk their dogs along the lake, I say “Hello,” and then ask if they know why the lake water has a strange, brownish cast to it.  The man tells me that upstream waters feed down, from a construction site on a hill nearby, creating silt-laden waters.  Those waters wash towards the lake.

In addition, there’d been a big storm earlier in the week that kicked up the lake’s floorbed.

They know the personality of the lake; they’ve lived in Asheville many years.

Thereupon, we 4 enter into a lively conversation of some 15-20 minutes.  We laugh…we share…we enjoy one another’s company and I marvel:  If I hadn’t gotten out of the car…if I’d given in to my misery…if I couldn’t reach out to others, I’d be locked into my own negativity.

We part company, promising to continue a conversation, in future.  They’re inveterate Beaver Lake Walkers, as are we.

As I continue on the path, now alone (my husband jogs ahead,) I stop in my tracks when I hear the deep chimes…then the gentle ones, following, in that order.

I stand, quietly taking it all in.

It’s random moments such as these that I feel the Deepest Spiritual Connection.

Perhaps it’s no coincidence I discovered (in course of that earlier conversation,) he’s a minister of God, and she’s that minister’s wife…Now, just for the record, I’m not looking to be proselytized– I’m a Defrocked Catholic who’s now an Agnostic.

No matter–I secretly thank them for helping me break out of a dark place.  You see–I’ll take my golden moments… wherever I can get them.

Now, have you ever been pulled out of a deep hole of despair by a seemingly-irrelevant event, then thought later:  “If that hadn’t happened, I’d still be rooted in negativity?”

Agents of change are all about:  Interesting people…nature’s beauty…wind chimes on a house…Or a combination of these seemingly-disparate things…

Now, my question:  “Are they really random?”

What I’ve noted in my lifetime:  If I move (and look about me or engage with others,) I can get out of my misery; if I don’t, I stay rooted there.

I’m grateful for that recognition…

Grateful, too, to 4 friends who remembered me on Mother’s Day (and I’m not their mother), one even bringing back earrings for me, from Thailand. Thank you Cynthia, Sheila, Lynn, and of course, Paul who sent me flowers…..You all buoy my spirit. (Click on the pic to bring up one card’s rich luster)…Again, “Thank You, friends.”

mother's day

About admin

A lifetime teacher and realtor who's now a published writer, Colleen Kelly Mellor is a humorist first, ever aware of the thread that connects us all. Her works have appeared in the WSJ, Providence Journal, and CNN and NY Times-acclaimed medical blog,, to name a few. All material on this blog is exclusive property of the author and cannot be reproduced without this author's express written consent.
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