- choked with emotion
(German verklemmt = emotionally inhibited in a convulsive way)
Yep. That was me.
Wednesday, April 29th dawned with rain. And a little more rain. And then it rained
(I'm not one to greet the sun with any sort of joy or rapture. The last time I was happy about sunrise was when I was 20 years old and had stayed up all night to "beat the dark". Anyone ever do that? Try it once. )
How to describe my One Perfect Day?
It was the company I was keeping. It was the rain. It was the birds. It was the forest.
Even being stuck in the back of a van with Little Miss Freakin' Ray of Sunshine, I was happy.
This happiness, by the end of the day, had reached spiritual proportions.
Being a nature girl all of my life, I have experienced moments of rapture in the woods. There is wonder around every corner, a new life to love hidden in every tree. April 29th was unlike anything I had previously known.
Was it especially birdy? Obviously, West Virginia is one of the better-kept secrets in the bird world. My first glimpse at a Cerulean Warbler, better looks at other warblers than I have ever had....A bird in every tree. Under every bush.
Example...ovenbirds. Every-Freakin-Place we stopped.
Was the company good? People I loved, people I hardly knew. And those I hardly knew, I now count as my friends.
Was the scenery beautiful? I thought so. I fell in love, actually.
It was being "selectively logged", so every five minutes, a huge tree would splinter apart, crash and die. (while answering the "call of nature", I happily mooned the loggers for breaking the beautiful silence)
(It wasn't until I got back home and started reading other blogs, that I found out that the site of my One Perfect Day will be soon be gone. Forever. I can't talk about the rage I feel.
Did I find life in the leaf litter? Adult red-spotted newts,
caterpillars who thought they were fierce.
I got to know British Solider lichen.
*Update...I forgot to talk about the bear!*
Did I see a bear (that large, hairy thing that I have a phobia about)? Yes. I was standing at the back of the van by myself and saw one running across the valley, thankfully in the opposite direction. I'm told that there is a new bird out there...the Susan Bird. The vocalization and display behavior of this species is this: Both arms out and pointing, the call goes, "Bear. BEar. BEAr. BEAR!! BEAR!!!!"
(Sung softly at first, with rising panic and terror delivered at the end)
I didn't faint or die from fright. That is something to be proud of.
I watched swallowtail butterflies, freshly minted, searching for a mate and a place to leave precious eggs.
My eyes were wet most of the day. I was verklempt.
I've been trying to explain that day to everyone who will listen, but my attempts have failed. That day changed me, and I can't change back.
I can't fully express the soaring joy in my heart that day. Humbled by the mountains and the moss and the memories, I can only turn my thoughts to when I can go back.
Connection with Nature...
(Red Eft, terrestrial juvenile stage of the Red-Spotted Newt...tiny hand on my finger, huge grip on my heart)