Mother Nature appears to be apologizing this week for the way our summer went. Too beautiful of a day, too perfect the temperature not to spend time out in it. I made plans to drive down to Round Lake State Park and walk the trail to the bridge crossing the little creek that is the outflow of the lake. I've been feeling a great need to sit by a babbling brook as it were, and I knew this was just the spot.
Plenty of other things I could and even should have been doing instead, and I couldn't help but feel I was flipping off the world in general as I headed down the trail. Screw responsible behavior, screw all the crises demanding our attention every time we turn on the tv or computer. I need to sit in the stillness of the woods by a creek that would soothingly talk to me.
I didn't take a camera but I did take a sketchbook, thinking I'd want to sketch that bridge. But once there, the bridge held no interest. Instead, I sat on the trail marker on the other side of the bridge where I could hear the water as it made its way through shallow areas on the right and a bit of damming from some branches on the left. In between, the water moved slowly and smoothly enough to create the most perfect reflections of the trees and ferns, a breeze occasionally causing the slightest of ripples. It was shady but not too cool, and I listened to that water, gazed rapt into those reflections for some time. I then wandered off the trail up and down the creek for short distances before feeling I'd soaked up enough of what I needed and headed back to the car.
And once there, I really wasn't ready to head home yet. Instead, I took a seat in one of the picnic shelters and sketched in pencil one of two docks where people were enjoying a little fishing while soaking up the sun. What a lovely afternoon...