The early morning mist was just beginning to clear as I arrived at the lake, binoculars around my neck, camera over my shoulder.
The peace of this place envelops me and caresses my being. Here I feel calm, at peace with me. Here is where Alex and I walked those interminable walks, as we discussed the possibilities of our life together. Here we laughed and joked, despite the problems we were trying to resolve. Here he occasionally stopped and gave me a hug. Here he told me we had no future.
Today I can cope with it all. I walk quietly along the lake shore watching the various ducks and geese chivying their offspring away from the shoreline, away from this gentle intruder in their midst.
I pass the night fishermen just waking, stretching from the overnight vigil of their fishing rods.
The occasional dog walker marches past – intent on getting this requirement for exercise over as fast as possible so they can return home They don’t have time to take in all the wonder of this place – from the tranquility of the lake to the insects hovering on the shoreline.
The lake warden is in his usual place. Telescope fixed on the far bank so he can carry out his daily bird check. I stop to talk. He is a kind man – he knows there are days when I don’t want to talk, days when the tears pour down my cheeks unhindered – when to stop them is just too much to ask.
Today is not one of them. Today I stop and we chat quietly about what he can see on the far bank. He lowers the tripod so I can have a look too. He makes sure I see the bird he has picked out as special.
Quietly he asks how things are today. I smile and acknowledge his concern, the gruff care he has taken on, unasked, over these last months. I can’t remember when I told him. I know when I did he nodded knowledgeably and said “It’s calm here – a good place to walk and think “. He understood then and does now. Some days I just need to be alone. Some days I’ll chat.
We part and I stroll on ever hopeful of that photo which will stand out from the others. The one which will truly capture the magic of this place. Not just the peace and tranquility but the joy I feel when I’m here.
One day I’ll take that photo. Not today.
But maybe tomorrow.
I’ll be back again soon.