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Turning left along a path brought Joe and I to the backside of a view I generally only see from the far end of this scene. Though I could see the cars passing in the distance, it felt as if we were someplace brand new and far away from the hustle and bustle of the daily world. The air was fresh, the ground not yet muddy from snow melt, and the sun warm on our shoulders. Being able to get out and about with Joe and see him enjoying the walks and hikes is a new experience as I usually would hike on my own in the past. Now we do it together, and it is a whole new activity for us in this new phase of life.

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Trailing

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Joe and I went out again to enjoy the warm sun and lack of blistering cold winds. We hadn’t walked here before, it is public land that once was 2 family farms. This old oak is the biggest, old tree around. Joe remembers this place from the days he patrolled it on the ATV following noise complaints and rowdy teenage party calls. For him it was a walk down memory lane, for me a new place to visit again as there are so many trails to explore.

Out there

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Monday I did get out into the woods behind the house. With the snow basically gone it was an easy walk downhill. The snow melt and rain have filled the stream in spite of the beaver dam. And as hoped, the water level fluctuations and freezing temperatures have left a rim of ice and ice formations all along the edges of the rocks and stream. A good day to be out.

Winter day

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I am looking forward to the winter days that will let me get out on the trail. Those clear, crisp days, those days that are filled with snowstorm clouds rolling in, those days when the the trees are laden with snow. To breathe in that winter air as I walk and feel the frozen earth under my feet. Tomorrow I have a vacation day which I hope I can spend out of doors enjoying the chance to be out.

Silence

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I like the silence that enfolds me while I am out hiking, how the noise of the traffic fades away, first to a distant hum and then dwindles off to nothing. When the only sounds that break the silence are the same ones that have broken it over the millennium. The wind sighing through the branches, the water rippling, the creak of the ice, the animals scurrying about their own business. My mind can be quieted as I discard thoughts that being lugged along do more harm than good. I take in great lungfuls of air and as many visual details as I can, each revitalizing me in their own way as time ceases to rush by. I can stand in this stillness and just be. I enjoy the solitude I find, rarely seeing another person on the trail taking in the bounty all around. And as I turn to head back to the car I find that all I have discarded along the way has instantly composted into the ground under my feet.