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Last week I made it back to the river. It was marvelous.

The temperature, as you may recall, reached 80 degrees or so last Wednesday, so I drive myself to RiverWinds Point in West Deptford. Sadly, I was not the only one who thought it was a great idea to visit the Delaware River in such gorgeous weather. I got what appeared to be the last available parking space and had to walk farther than usual to reach an empty bench upon which to park my carcass.

But none of that mattered. For the first time this year, the weather was warm, the winds minimal, and I was once again back at the river.

(I’ve been at the river a couple of times when the weather was a little too cool. My Closest Companion and I had a little picnic inside the car. It was quite pleasant, but it’s not the same as sitting closer to and hearing the water, feeling the water.)

It’s the proximity to the water that does it for me. The negative ions bring me peace. Sitting by the river — sometimes for hours — is healing for me. Don’t ask me why. I haven’t a clue. But it works wonders for me, makes me feel good, makes me happy.

Last week, I stayed at the river for about an hour before starting to feel exhausted. I walked back to the car and drove home — the drive felt very long, I’m afraid.

Still, it was shirtsleeve weather and I was at the river and it was just terrific.

Aside from the negative ions imparting a feeling of happiness when I’m at the river, I’m not sure what the appeal really is.

Oh, sure, I watch the planes land at and take off from Philadelphia International Airport across the river. Sometimes there’s a lot of river traffic and it’s not always barges and tankers and container ships — sometimes a luxury yacht cruises by. And, of course, who can forget when the Pope landed at the airport last September. There were hundreds of people at RiverWinds Point to see that.

But it’s the peacefulness I crave when I visit the river. And there is plenty of peace to be found there.

The days will be warmer soon and I’ll get to spend more and more time at the river.