I had planned to drive downtown yesterday to attend my first ever yoga class. The studio is situated in a lovely old house in Pensacola's historical district, fronting on Seville Square with a view of the Bay. It is led by folks with deep experience in the practice and commitment to the community. Sometimes when I decide to move out into a new space, it takes me a little while to actually get there. I'll have an idea, make a plan, and start swimming in the general direction of where I perceive shore to be. Usually I find little islands along the way and stop off for awhile before making it to my original destination!
Yesterday was like that. Some things popped up that needed my attention and presence here rather than downtown, and so I postponed visiting Breathe Yoga, but did go for an early morning walk in our woods. Not exactly a bad second choice.
I left the house a few minutes after 7 — prime time for birds in the woods. I passed by a woodpecker busy on the side of a dead pine, and then startled a covey of quail. For the first 15 minutes, before the sun was fully up, a cool, moisture-laden breeze felt like a spa treatment for the spirit.
There is a boggy area on the path that our friend Harold and Buck refer to as a "weeping hill." It is rarely completely dry. That's where I can find pink sundews at certain times of the year, along with all sorts of bog plants, like this "hat pin".
Berries for birds, deer, turkey, squirrels and other critters have been abundant this year. Usually, in mid-August I would expect to find a few dry, shriveled berries on parched stems, not this late, lush crop.
Engage your imagination here, and maybe you can see what I saw but was not nearly quick enough to take a picture of: a large doe, surprised by this two-legged morning interloper, loped in a graceful s-curve from one side of the tree cover to the other, flying a white tail flag and turning her head back over her shoulders in my direction to take a look at me. She reminded me of a star quarterback running, untouched, through a line, carrying the mail for a touchdown.
When I see a sight like that, the tumblers of my life click back into place and the rest of my day is a pure, sweet gift.
Down in the stream bed, I admire lush ferns, dark water and fox grape tendrils and breathe deep the air that smells like a brilliant herbal mix of mint, sage, ginger root, eucalyptus, marjoram and ancient rotted leaf.