I like living off the beaten path. Not that we’re at all out in the middle of nowhere (that could depend on who you ask), but we have a few acres of our own and no neighbors yet, so we’re moderately secluded. My wife and I both grew up in similar environments, then we moved closer to the city when we were married. It was a perfectly fine place to start out, but I think we both had a yearning to get back out into the country when we were able to.
This is our first spring in the new house, and I’m enjoying getting reacclimated to the changing of the seasons outside of the city. I’ve remarked several times to S over the past couple weeks how much I like having woods again. We had a couple massive oaks, a big ol’ willow, and some pine trees at the old house, but nothing that would be confused with a forest. I don’t even know if, by definition, you can even technically have ‘woods’ on a half-acre lot.
When winter was just starting to break, the first bits of green that appeared came from the forest floor – trout lily, umbrella plant (mayapple), and ferns. Now most of the trees are fully leafed out, and the understory is back to that perpetual state of green-tinted shadow. When you take just a few steps in, the air seems a little heavier, sounds are muffled, and every breath smells of earth. Inhale… it’s good to be back.
It’s also fun to see each stage of life – right next to a towering maple is a moss-covered rotting log that has been lying prone for years, which sits beside a sapling, just springing up from the ground and ready to take the place vacated by its elder. Not to mention the vultures and that poor groundhog…
Wow, that got pretty deep for talking about a bunch of trees. But, as I said, I really like having woods again. Though I do thoroughly enjoy having some cleared land to be able to garden upon 🙂
On a much more serious note, the other day, the first shot was fired in what will be a never-ending war with those white-tailed monsters – I found just a little nibble on one of my currants. And they walked right through my new raspberry bed. Seriously, the surrounding acre of emptiness wasn’t good enough; you had to pick the twelve feet that I’m trying to protect? Sigh, and we had coexisted peacefully until now. They left the tulips alone, and seemed to stay mostly in the field behind us. Somehow I knew that we were just living a dream that had to come to an end at some point. Game on.
Do you like woods or prefer pasture? Or concrete?