I found this post in my drafts folder. I wrote it last October or so. I’m not sure why I never posted it so I’m posting it now.
Today, Jenn and I went for a hike on Maple Mountain. There was a forest fire there this summer so we wanted to see what the burnt area looked like before anything has had a chance to grow back. It was fascinating, and a little spooky. The burnt bark on the remaining trees was now spongy from the recent rains. Stella was unconcerned with the larger implications and ran around like an idiot, loving every minute of it. For an area so close by, it was a neat and different little outing.
And last week, Jenn and I took Stella for a night walk through the forest trails in our neighbourhood. We hike these trails virtually every day but almost never at night, and it was a completely different experience. There was no moon out that night so it was really dark. Jenn had a headlamp on and it gave the woods a Blair Witch Project vibe. Once we got back onto the road, we saw two white owls perched on the power line overhead, their unflappably (ha) stoic faces staring hard at us. We hear owls around here a lot but don’t see them often, and this was the first time either of us had seen two owls at once. It was crazy how a walk we do all the time was so different from usual.
I like this stuff. I like it when we are able to experience new things in places we are already extremely familiar with. It makes me feel like we are doing a good job of keeping our brains turned on, of looking for and appreciating the subtle changes around us. I’m proud of that.