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It was good to get away from everyday cares, if only for a little while.  My husband is going to Beijing for five weeks, and while I do my best not to think of it, I know the day of departure is looming.    


So I was glad for the time together in Eureka Springs, where so many before us have come to tap into the area’s healing powers.  We had no agendas, no list of ‘must dos’, taking each day and meal and experience as it came.  We visited a few of the area’s natural wonders, including some of its natural springs that once were the source of Ozarka bottled water, before the company moved its operations to Texas.  We took in a few of the shops, antique stores as well as ‘vintage’ stores; the latter we found were ‘vintage’ in name only as none carried vintage wares.   


Here in Eureka, it’s the antique stores who offer vintage goods.  I could have had a vintage Barbie case for a mere $45 and I saw sheets of vintage photos for ninety percent less.  It made me sad to think that no family member had wanted to keep these old Victorian portraits and photos for their own sakes.  Perhaps the person who left behind the photos for the pearly gates left behind no remaining family.  Either way, it’s a sad thought. 


Darting in and out of quaint little Victorian shops to keep out of the rain, my husband’s eye fell on an interesting book title.  “How to Profit from the Coming Rapture: Getting Ahead When You’re Left Behind”.  I believe it may offer tongue in cheek advice to help readers laugh at those worries in life that never transpire but make us anxious all the same.  Maybe somewhere in those pages, it teaches the importance of telling the truth, like when to call yourself ‘vintage’ and when it’s time to stop calling yourself Ozarka.  


We were fortunate to stay at a place that was true to the words written about it.  And, because it was grounded in truth, it became more than claimed to be.  Mt. Victoria Inn was simply the best part of my Eureka Springs visit.  Each day I came to borrowed ‘home’ after a day of exploring to immerse myself in simple pleasures, while soaking up the ambiance of comfortable elegance around me.  


On the outside veranda, I let the breeze caress my face and carry away my worries; I allowed myself to get lost in a good book or watching a good movie while curled snug in my borrowed bed; and I enjoyed life and wrote about it while others prepared my meals.  And food always tastes better when prepared by another’s capable and gifted hands. 


Without dipping even my smallest toe in the famed local waters, I found relief from my worries.  Somehow, like that Texas company who left behind everything but the name, I need to carry something of this healing place with me.  But I want substance over form; something that is not in name only.