Well-worn and beaten,

You are still the first I grab,

For familiar warmth.

My flannel is 10-plus years old. It has finally achieved the texture of the old flannel your dad wears around the house in the fall. You know the one your mom is constantly trying to get rid of because of how many years old it is and how many holes it has in the sleeves. Somehow it bounces from closest to closet and drawer to drawer constantly evading the goodwill box. That’s mine, now.

My flannel comes with me on weekend getaways whether I’m hiking, camping, fishing, or sitting on the beach in the evening. It’s been to the mountains, lakes, woods, and beaches of the East Coast.

I have taken it to campgrounds in the White Mountains of New Hampshire and worn it around the fire on a cool summer evening. I have worn it in the middle of winter in Vermont when it’s 4 below outside and I just want something warm to wear inside when I’m snuggled up on the couch with a good book or movie. I have worn it on a windy day at the Eastern Shore in Virginia in the fall. It’s the first thing I grab when I feel that evening chill in the summer and the first thing I wear on a cold winter morning with snow coming down.

My favorite time to wear my flannel is late summer during golden hour. In Acadia National Park, along the oceanfront on the red rocks. The buoys are ringing in the distance, a lobster boat slowly meanders by, and on the breeze you can taste the salt as it hits you. I’m wearing my flannel, and I feel content.

I imagine my flannel will be with me for many adventures to come.