Tuesday, 1 May 2012
Weekend in the woods
We also took a long walk around the forest with the old man who has owned and maintained the land for decades, Del Harding. Harding led a group of us across the landscape features, from an ancient spring to a Victorian sawyer pit to his newly-dug frog pond. He pointed out obscure plants and flowers in unobtrusive crannies, spoke lovingly of the individual animals that lived there. Most of all, he talked about wood and soil, how he coppices the occasional tree to create more new growth and either carve the wood or use it to recultivate the healthy mattress of underfoot mycellium.
That night we and others gathered around a campfire and sang, The Girl singing along and playing sticks to others' fiddle and washboard. As we camped outside for the night, The Girl for the first time, she asked, "Can we do this every weekend?"