Give me a path into the woods any day. Give me dirt, mud, weeds, and shade-loving ground cover. I’ll take hills and valleys, sharp winding turns, and tree roots poking up everywhere, making the path bumpy and necessarily slow. I’ll take the scent of decaying leaves, the creaking of trees high in the sky, and the chirping of birds. Give me washed out areas full of muck and mire where I have to be clever and invent a way around them. Give me furtive wildlife, sneaking in and out of trees and shrubs, daring me to follow them. I’ll take the dappled sunlight making its way in now and then along with cold breezes.
I’ll take all of it over asphalt and concrete. I’ll take it over clear, smooth, easy, flat paths that are paved or graveled over. Any day of the year, I’ll settle for muddy paths in the woods over brilliant city lights and glamorous entertainment. Anytime you name, I’ll find my fun in figuring out which bird chirped off to the left, which frog is seeking a mate, and which animal burrowed into the ground and made an interesting little den.
I don’t want fancy food or drinks will little umbrellas in them. I don’t need fancy shoes or cars with leather interiors. I don’t want silk trousers or hair dyes or makeup. All I ever really want is the woods and the peace I find therein. I’m simple like that.
|Heading into the woods.|