Tuesday, 11 October 2005

A flying alarm clock.

Bruce has grown! Even in the dark I could tell, there is more of him now you see.

It was good to get back to the woods, it really felt like home. You know the feeling you get when you have been away for a week or two and you get back to the familiar surroundings of home, well it was like that as soon as I got off the bus. There was a wind blowing and soon as the cool air heavy with the smell of trees hit me I felt more comfortable and happy than in any hotel bed. Walking the familiar paths back to my patch of woods was fantastic. Half the moon hung just above the horizon, a deep straw colour silhouetting the trees in the distance black against the blue of the sky. The further I got from the motorway the quieter it became and the greater the feeling of being in the wilds became, there is something spectacular about windy nights in the woods, it feels wild your senses heighten everything is on edge and full of energy.

I took a detour to see Bruce and climbed to the top of the Ridgeway, looking out over Oxfordshire I felt detached from modern life, free from its shackles and very very glad to be back. Being my usual organised self I discovered that I had no alarm clock and no way of telling the time. When I had packed my sleeping bag away in it’s waterproof bag I had forgotten that it was wet, one week on and it did not smell too good, smelt pretty bad actually, better than this though was the fact that it was still wet. There is nothing like getting into a wet stinking sleeping bag to raise your mood. However, by the time it had dried out from my body heat I had also got used to the smell and then had a very good night’s sleep. To spoil myself I took out a Thermarest self inflating mattress (punctured) and I had the best night’s sleep I have had since I left. Strange that, maybe it was the fresh air, natural light and familiar surroundings.

Back to telling when it is time to get up by how light it is then. I had forgotten about the other way of telling the time, I don’t think I have mentioned it before but there is an Owl that lives near me, at dusk every night it screeches a few times before flying away. Every morning when the Owl returns it screeches it’s presence before turning in for the day. I way lying in bed this morning trying to convince my self that I could stay in bed a bit longer, then the Owl returned and I realised it was time to get up pretty quick. When packing away my stuff I found a time piece and realised that I was ten minutes out with what time it was, the Owl was ten minutes late I guess it gets light ten minutes later than it did last week. I was a little bit late for work, only a few minutes late but I resisted the urge to blame it on my Owl being late.

Walking to the bus I could not believe how much the landscape had changed since I left. The first leaves have started turning yellow, great swathes of them sometimes. Shoots have started coming up in the ploughed fields giving them a hazy green appearance, the cover is so slight that which ever bit of the field you look at appears brown whilst the bits not being focused on in the peripheral vision appear green.

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