Friday, October 05, 2007

Lost and Found in Achvarasdal

Treasures are often things left behind that survive on their own. Achvarasdal, a little remnant woods, is like that. The former estate that planted the trees has become an old people's home. Both the people and the trees can be overlooked until or unless someone introduces you to them. I wandered into the woods one day because it was close enough to my new home that I could find it on my own.

If we had streets and blocks and corners, I would say that it is just down the street and around the first corner. In the States I fell into a conversation akin to the Abbot and Costello who's on first routine when I replied to Morris's question: "How far is it?" with "About 6 blocks." He tried again, "How far is it?" "About 6 blocks." And then after a long silence, "What's a 'block'?" Achvarasdal is close by city or country standards. I can walk from my house to there, but my First Solo Car Ride was to the woods. I was aching to see trees and listen to their quiet, secret conversations. I walked into the woods holding a brochure from the library with a map and a description of the woods.

No more than a few feet into the woods I ran into a couple coming out. The man was overjoyed to see me with a brochure of the woods. We talked. I was invited to join the woodlands management group. I had been introduced to the treasure of this little woods and cheerfully became a part of it. My First Solo Car Ride and my First Friends on my own are woven into this treescape.

Since I first wrote this piece, which has been languishing in my draft folder, I have taken several guided walks into Achvarasdal to learn about birds and bats and trees and lichens. It has provided opportunities to attend conferences of other community woodland managers. I recently rediscovered these photos and decided to share them here.

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At 6:38 PM, Blogger Hayden said...

WONDERFUL photos! I love dignified old trees and woods. I am certain that they are all inhabited by fairies and trolls. No doubts in my mind, my bones tell me it's so.

At 4:20 PM, Blogger The Curmudgeon said...

Six blocks.

A lot of times, though, we speak in minutes: It's five minutes away. It's a good half-hour away. (Good as opposed to what? In this case "good" meaning "at least" and probably five or ten minutes more.)

Distance is expressed as time.

They are very nice photos.

At 7:41 AM, Blogger landgirl said...

Yes, Hayden, these trees definitely have such wee folk living in them.

At 7:43 AM, Blogger landgirl said...

Cur, I had forgotten about that phrase, "good" in the context of time. One of the most useful equations I ever learned was that D = rt. A man recently returned from 13 years of traveling around the world using only human power. You can get anywhere as long as you take the time.


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