Today I had the opportunity for a day off, so I took it. I wanted to take some time to recharge and to think.
I walked down the hill from our house to the north fork of the Shenandoah River and spent the morning rambling through the woods, over rocks, and through streams along the river’s edge.
I had my lunch along in my backpack and ate in a field of lush grass. The skies were overcast, keeping the temperature just under 70° F.
I saw squirrels and birds everywhere, busy with nest building and courting. Along the riverbank turtles basked on fallen trees.
I came upon a grove of young trees that looked like Bradford Pears–at least the ones that were still standing. A bunch had been chopped down by beaver. With a little hunting, I found the beaver lodge.
There were tracks in the mud along the river, telling stories of raccoon, mink, groundhog, deer, and bear.
Coming up a ravine, a great bird burst out of tree overhead. A large owl glared at me from his new perch, grumpy at having his slumber cut short.
Sometime early afternoon the rain started in soft sprinkles. I hiked up out of the woods to town, only a mile or so from home and enjoyed the mist cooling me on my walk home.
I spent the remainder of the afternoon on the porch swing, scratching out plans for the next few months until the girls came home from school. They grabbed a snack before we loaded up to head down to my in-law’s where Steph had spent the day.
I feel refreshed.