The Woods

Here I am again, on a Sunday morning in July. I’ve got my camera case, a lunch packed, my cell phone with me, but I’m far from any town. At least three miles! I enjoy coming out here to write. I’m in a state park, on a side of the park that has electricity, but few people visit. I’m writing at a shelter.
Earlier I took some photos of wildflowers on the other side of the park. I can see the park beach and campground from here, across the lake. There is a gentle, cool breeze coming at me. I can hear a few birds singing, even a crow, and what might be an owl. Guess he either stayed up late or is an early riser!
This is one of the spots where you can get away from people in Iowa. Iowa is not really known for its great forested areas. Down south in Missouri they have lots of woods. I’d like to take a vacation there one day. But I digress.
My wife has been married to me for 31 years and still doesn’t understand why I love it out here. That’s because she’s an indoor person. I love the freedom, the sights and smells of the woods, the sounds, just about everything about it. What smells musty to a lot of people smells delicious to me.
I love taking pictures of flowers and animals, but I’m not the kind to sit around and wait for an animal to come to me. I prefer walking the trails, taking pics. I took three or four pictures of flowers this morning. The skies are only partly cloudy, though it looked as if it had rained a bit last night.
Behind me there is a stand of skinny trees which caught my eye. Being a writer and a photographer, I’m both an audio and visual person. A perfect match, in my opinion. Here I can enjoy the little things in life. Like a small yellow butterfly floating around here.
What I don’t like is the garbage that people leave behind on the ground. Fortunately, this park is cleaner than some. This article will ramble, because my thoughts are rambling today. I just heard a strange bird sound that I’ve heard before, but can’t identify. I can hear a cricket chirping. Now, if that sound were in my house, I’d be very annoyed. Here it’s a natural thing and actually sounds like music to my ears.
There aren’t even a lot of pestering insects around right now. The only person I’ve seen in the last half-hour, since writing this, is a bicyclist, and a couple cars.
For the last couple of years, during the summer, I’ve made a habit of coming out here and having a lone picnic. My wife and I have gone on picnics, but they usually ended up picnics from hell. She didn’t like being outside for very long. She just wanted to grill hamburgers and hot dogs and eat a few and go home. Not my idea of a picnic.
I just have a couple of things to eat and drink, nothing fancy, or difficult to make. No grilling at all. Too much smoke, heat and trouble.
I’ll probably post this on one of the nature groups I’ve joined on EP. It will be the first and, hopefully, not the last time. I’m going to eat an early lunch and maybe write again later.

I’m done. The sun is out fairly well, and I can see the clouds heading south. A little later, I’m going to take my camera down by the lake shore, just a hundred feet or so from here. From here I can see a jut of land and, near it, some lake scum. But don’t worry, it’s natural. The lake waters must not be moving too much by the shore, because it’s been there over a hour.
I haven’t been out in the woods as much as I usually have been this year. That’s because this year the rains started early, in April, and continue into mid-July. It’s been a very wet year here, not conducive to walking grassy trails. I plan on looking for more wooded areas around here.
I know of a large wooded tract of land in the Omaha metro area that is privately owned, but open to the public. I might go there in a couple weeks. I’ve been there once or twice before, but didn’t go very far. I’m going to take my backpack this time. Anybody want to go with me?
I’m going to end this post. Hope I didn’t bore anyone.
IanMatthew IanMatthew
56-60, M
9 Responses Jul 18, 2010

Very poetic.

My camera is an extension of my personality ... <br />
Knowing I am going to take photos as I hike in the State Parks here in Pennsylvania <br />
Makes me feel elated .. to see the seasons change ..<br />
Whether it rains or snows or is hot, sunny or cloudy<br />
There are always images all around me <br />
No matter which way I turn<br />
there is another composition I must have<br />
the ever changing light that comes through the trees<br />
there is nothing like it<br />
a gift<br />
to be cherished

That sounds like fun

IanMathew... I loved your description about being in the woods..... I felt like I was there with you. I don't write when I hike but I do take a lot of pictures. Its references for my paintings. I come a live when I step into the woods. Surrounded by nature is a slice of heaven for me. I personally think I was born in the wrong era. This is where I find my peace... Great story!!!!

No, I didn't, but you can join me anytime!

It wasn't boring in the least! I agree with esotericgirl and blackforest - it was very descriptive which only heightened the imagination sequence. The only suggestions I could think of, if you're looking for critique, is to add breaks when you're moving on between intervals or adding a time-stamp between each one. I do that with my lengthier journal entries and it's helped my writing really flow.<br />
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I loved reading this and I have to say I'm really jealous. I love nature and the idea of exploring the woods sounds like fun! We have no woods to speak of but plenty of deserts to brag about. If I lived there I would have gladly taken you up on your offer.<br />
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Did you end up going to the private land you spoke?

I am an indoor person most of my time but I love nature too and you described it as best as you can...!

Thank you, sweetie.

Not boring! Very descriptive, and makes me long to be in the forest, even though I just went on a ten mile hike today. Great story!