What an unexpected, beautiful surprise, now at the end of the year, to discover a completely new path in the woods. As you know, I walk our dogs every day. And I admit, our usual dirt roads have begun to lose some of their magic for me, considering I see those same trees and logs and bushes every day, and now is the season where things look the same for a long, long time. Bare, brown, wet. Beautiful, yes, but I wasn't feeling as excited to take our morning walks anymore.
There is a wooded hillside that we look at from our kitchen window, and when we moved here, we saw a large herd of wild boar digging their snouts through the snow, looking for food in deep winter. Although this was a beautiful sight, looking out from the within our warm, secure home, it made me a bit afraid of that part of the forest. Then some other dog owners told me there were also a lot of deer in those parts. This all made me hesitant to enter the woods on that side, and so years have gone by with a whole area of wilderness that I had never explored right in front of us.
I had a morning off the other day and was feeling a mixture of bored of my regular walks, and brave enough to try something new. I thought, Today is the day, I'm going to finally have a look at those woods...I need inspiring to take photographs of!
I headed into unknown territory, going up the steep path that was ankle deep with fallen leaves. At first I wasn't very impressed; it was basically the same as the other way I go every day. But then I noticed that there was sky shining from behind the trees up at the top of the hill, and I got curious about what was on the other side. I went quicker, motivated by curiosity, noticing how happy the dogs were to have a fresh path to sniff.
Finally I reached the top and the thin path I had been on joined a wide dirt road. The sky was big and there were birds fluttering and chirping in that wide open space. A valley, tall grasses bleached by the cold, dry brown thistles and gigantic piles of logs. Silvery birch, bare and blue against the tan, camel hillside. My heart was beating fast as I took pictures. I was dumfounded that this beauty was right behind my home.
If I could, I would take you there. I would take you by the hand, dear reader, and lead you up the papery path, up up up, til the trees spread and the sky stretches and you feel small under a big sky. You feel far away from the cars and houses. Time stops. There is only sky, birds, trees, tall grass, and the road under your feet.
At the first chance I took Rafael and Ramon to see it.
I want you to know how happy I am to have this new place to photograph, to share with you. The next four seasons will be so much sweeter because of this.