Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Y is for Yonder

Theme ~ Good Things:

I own a wonderful book called On My Swedish Island, Discovering The Secrets Of Scandinavian Well-Being, by Julie Catterson Lindahl.

The author is American and British; when she wrote the book she lived with her Swedish husband and twins on a Swedish island outside Stockholm. 

I read the book right before I moved to the mountains and I was delighted to discover how much we get right in terms of lifestyle, health, food, design, and so on in Scandinavia. 

Reading the book, I discovered a concept new to me: The long view. I had never heard that having a long view is really good for human beings. But Ms. Lindahl says that she actually discovered this from living in Sweden; that Swedes are obsessed with it and work very hard to achieve it. The author writes that since living on this island, she has come to understand that having a long view into nature is to live well.


Thinking back to our home in a Stockholm suburb, I remember my bedroom window had a view right into our neighbors huge cherry tree; beautiful in cherry blossom time, successfully tempting me with thievery in cherry time, but not much to look at for the rest of the year. But our kitchen window had a long view, and I loved to sit at our kitchen table and look up the road to the hill in the background. Two very tall trees on the hill would sway in the wind and their crowns would touch. I loved that view, a good long view into nature. 

I'm thinking right now, that maybe it was not only the Baltic herring that prompted our dad to take us out on the Baltic Sea in a small boat every summer. Maybe he, good Swede that he was, also longed for that long view of the open water.

Here in the mountains, where we live now, all views into nature are long. I have posted some above and have shared so many more on this blog. And I can't help but remember how these views seem to make my blogger friends happy. I certainly feel a sense of well-being every time I look out our windows. 

Of course I realize that not everyone is able to get a property with a long view. While this may be a huge priority for Swedes, I doubt it is one here. Our Los Angeles house is a good example, sitting as it does right by the sidewalk. I always thought of it as a townhouse. To protect us from the sights and sounds of the street, we let the bougainvillea hedge grow out of control. It became home to many generations of mockingbirds; it drew many ohs and ahs from bypassers; and the hedge even served as backdrop for photo shoots. This was Los Angeles, after all.

I almost forgot, my Y word, YONDER. Isn't it a marvelous old fashioned word? Yonder: In the distance, afar, far away. So, to sum this way too long post up: The view yonder is a very good thing, indeed.


Thank you so much for your complimentary comments on my X post. I wasn't sure if I cheated or not, coming up with just a picture. Glad you liked it. 

And Wordpress bloggers, I still can't leave comments on Wordpress blogs. Will check into it after the A to Z is over later this week. 


  1. I miss the long view! The neighbors' houses are all that I see.

  2. Interesting. I'm not sure I ever heard the expression "long view". Although Sweden as a whole is not very densely populated I suspect most people do not have a long view from their home though. I'm sure most people like a view... But not sure it's a main priority, or so many people would not be living in towns and villages ;) I guess I have sort of a half-long view from my kitchen window. (I can see some things about 1 km away but it's not a rural view or an all open view...) Have to admit though that that view was one of the things I "fell for" when looking at this flat! :)

  3. I love your long view in the first pic, the sky is wonderful... i have always loved long views. i did have a long view for 3 years in KY but the rest of my life have lived jammed up tight next to other houses. maybe that is why i love the beach so much, i had not thought about the long view and feeling of peace that comes with staring into the horizon.... great post.
    down yonder in the paw paw patch just popped in my head... how weird is that

  4. Yonder is one of the reasons I fell in love with Colorado. We lived in a pine forest for 30 years and could not see too far at all. Moving here was such an eye-opening experience, literally!
    I loved your X photo. It reminded me of a hidden picture puzzle! X-cellent choice!

  5. Inger, that concept is new to me too. I am glad that "The long view" is really good for human beings, because here where we live now (since 1998) all views into nature are long. You and my blog friends that visit my blog know that I have a "long view" from my house to a huge Jurumirim Dam, a reservoir with a limpid and calm water.
    LOVE always seeing your beautiful photos and the views from the nature on your blog make me feel happy too.
    Love also the gorgeous bougainvillea hedge in LA and sounds lovely that it was home to many generations of mockingbirds.

  6. i just love all of your canyon photos. the colors, rich earthy tones, just bring out something in me. :)

  7. I wish I had a long view! That bush is gorgeous! I would take a picture in front of it, too!

  8. See, I thought for a little bit there you were talking philosophically about the long view--as in planning life in such a way that you're always working toward and future and thinking in larger terms. I was going to say, "Dude! (Yeah, I've been reading a TON of retro blogs.) I'm totally a long distance runner rather than a sprinter." But if you're talking about actual views... Okay. That works too. =)

    True Heroes from A to Z

  9. Like Crystal, I thought at first you were speaking philosophically. And in a way you were.

    America was settled by those pioneers who wanted to go Yonder, to see what lay over the next mountain range or down the next river. They looked to the horizon.

    The journey was its own destination for them. And so should it be for us.

    I think there is in all of us a sense of wonder when we look out across the plains or up at the Redwoods or at the towering mountains or the endless sweep of the sea.

    Thanks for such a refreshing post, Inger. I have to work 6 days this week not 5, and I needed the lift to the beginning of my work week!

  10. Sometimes, Inger, the wordpress blogs have blocked other blog users from commenting. (depends on what they select in the commenting profile)

    I have always loved the LONG view, and I have a tendency to see things as a whole, connected in some way. I love looking for the mountains and especially the ocean. A lake or river doesn't suffice. The long view gives hope, and as it is attached to nature, it appeals to me. I didn't call it this before, Inger, so thanks for clarifying my life view for me.

    I would think Samson has that long view too. Or is he looking for something to chase?

  11. Hello again, Inger.
    I love old words, and 'yonder' is perfect. You have to take a long view.
    Everywhere seems crushed and looking inward in England, although I was brought up in a small village with a mountain, tarn and farms around. I yearn to return there.
    Peace and solitude is good, too.

  12. Dear Inger, I'm going to look for this book at the library. I'd like to know more about Sweden because I so admire you and part of who we are comes from where we've been. So Sweden must be a pretty wonderful place. Peace.

  13. We do not have a long view where I live. But your bougainvillea hedge
    is beautiful and I would take that view anyday. My mom always used the word yonder....get me that thing over yonder...was sometimes hard to figure out where the heck yonder was....

  14. You have given me so much to think about--the long view--can we have one when we are older?

  15. The long view! That's so well put. It's one of the things I love most about living here, and yet I've never put it into those words.

  16. I recently read that the long view is quite necessary for our eyesight today as we sit entirely too long glued to our glowing screens. I try to enjoy my own long view from the porch to help counteract my computer hours. It does feel good.

  17. I hadn't heard of that concept before, but when I thought about it, it makes sense. That is what sold us our house to us, the sweeping view down over the valley from both our conservatory and, lucky me, my bedroom :D
    Sophie's Thoughts & Fumbles - A to Z Ghosts
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  18. the long view is what brought me home to Montana. My daughters understand and long to move back to Montana for the long view...

    somehow it seems to bring us closer to heaven...


  19. The "long view" is important for retaining our sanity (at least for those of us who have some). It's important to live in the "here and now" but to do that in the context of the much longer term. Though not a Swede, I'm familiar with thinking in the long view.

    Blessings and Bear hugs!

  20. Those pictures are stunning. I live very close to mountains and I have a long view but also a crowed one. Phil and I have decided once our last chick has left the nest we are headed to a very secluded area. CAN'T WAIT!!!!

  21. I never spent time in Sweden, though I did make it to Bodo and Trondheim in Norway.

    Your place looks really nice. I like my land in the Blue Ridge Mountains, but you have to walk up to the crest of my mountain to see a "long view." The forest is too thick on the mountain sides to see much.

    There's a book by a New Zealander, named Tom Neale. The book is titled "an island to oneself." You might like it.

  22. Hi Inger, I think that we all need a long view. I certainly do. In front and in back of my house. On one side I have the beautiful wide river and in the back when I look from the upstair windows I can see over the cedar hedge way into the hay field. The hedge is there for a wind break and that's oK.


  23. Inger, a new term to me too. Now I know why I like to just stand or sit and stare out into the ocean....as far as the eye can see. Much like your views there in the mountain plains.

  24. I think I would like to read this book, Inger. It has a beautiful philosophy. And you are leaving comments on my blog, but for some reason you have gone to the Spam folder. I think that may be happening elsewhere. Why don't you mention this in your next post, and all the WP people can go free you from your Spam prison. :-) So frustrating for you, I know! ox


Thanks for leaving a comment.. ~~ Inger


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