Today I want to share something that I love to do and that is to go exploring.
Regardless of circumstances there is always opportunity to see new sights wherever you are. In big cities most of it involves architectural wonders, or shops and little cafes. Lucky enough, I live right next to a vast space of land meant specifically to preserve land and keep animals in their natural habitat which probably has my Father questioning why I wasn't sent there long ago.
Now I don’t profess to be a nature lover, but I do enjoy going on the off beaten path. It’s one of those things where if you tell me that I’m about to go on a two hour walk I’ll probably balk, but if you say it’s only a half hour, and we get conveniently sidetracked, I won’t mind at all. The best thing about exploring is it’s on your own time. Paved paths are just reminders that civilization does exist, and in an emergency there is help, so no need to die a martyr’s death among the thistles and thorns.
The last time I went on my own I decided to follow the bank of the river that’s been recently flooded. To get there I had to first climb across the tree trunks that had conveniently fallen down to make a bridge over the debris. This is when I’m grateful for my glorious, yet short, gymnastics career and pity those who don’t know what an arabesque is. Once on the other side I hunker down so my toes are just hanging off the edge. This is a perfect position to nature watch, and no wonder this is how birds sit for hours on end waiting for their prey.
Unfortunately being a reformed carnivore I do not eat mussels, fish, or other moving things raw. Instead I watch the light play across the water and think for an unlimited time. Once finished my repose, I often see how much farther I can go before becoming completely directionless. Depending on the time of day, and recognizable landmarks, the time it takes for this to occur varies greatly. I tend to not panic and just keep walking until I find a path. On the occasion I find an animal bigger than me I then decided to turn my walk into a run. One time as it was getting dark a giant owl swooped down as if to eat me. It had large grey wings and beady eyes, they were very sinister. Afterwards I was told it could have been a Great Horned Owl. The only other menacing creature with horns I know of tempts small children and carries a pitchfork; it could have been one and the same.
Having made it through the forest alive, I return home to a hero’s welcome which coincidentally coincides with suppertime. After dinner there is usually a lot of activity and buzz going on. Before heading in for the night though I like to open the front door and lookout into the silence, there are no skyscrapers or building to block the view. Grassland stretches out before you and then there are the coulees after that.
It’s definitely nice ever once in a while to take a moment to breathe and enjoy the moment you’re in.