'I only went out for a walk and finally concluded to stay out 'til sundown, for going out, I found was really going in.' John Muir
I've seen the top of Everest (from a long way off), smelled the breath of a whale (from way too close) and lived on a boat in Greece (for a few years), but I continue to experience some of my most precious moments right outside my backdoor.
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Sunday, 24 March 2013
We switched off our lights and went for a walk during Earth Hour last night (8.30pm). Snow had drifted to the height of the hedges and trees had white stripes on the exposed side of their trunks. John's sheep were huddled in the gateway I normally lean on to view Moel Fammau. Their eyes shone in the snow-light. Even without a moon, we didn't need a torch to see our way. No traffic moved. The world was silent apart from the whistle of wind. We felt the sting of blown snow on our cheeks. Branches of trees lolled on the ground, weighted down by layers of snow. I wondered if they'd snap. I saw myself going around with a big stick, liberating all the branches, like the nurse who cut off my plaster cast when I was small and made my thin white arm feel light and free again.
When we got back home, we lit candles for the remaining 25 minutes and sat in silence, even though we really, really wanted to make a cup of tea. The silence made my ears pop and I would swear I heard the earth around our house sigh for the relief of just an hours rest. My ears, their tiny tubes, canals and delicate bones seemed to sigh too for their short rest.