Saturday, July 19, 2008

Thank you Heron

This morning was absolutely magical. We went to the river to eat our breakfast and take a swim. We were the only ones there, which was wonderful. It was an amazingly clear and sunny day, if a part of a day could be a gift then this morning was a gift from the Universe. The part of the river I like to go to has a broken dam and the swimming hole is the area right before the dam, there is a sandy beach right that is nice and clean and it is a great natural spot. I have actually been going there for twenty years, although until about 8 years ago you had to park about a mile a way and trek through the woods to get there. We always walked fast in the spring because there were so many caterpillars in the trees, we thought there were pooping on our heads. Even having to walk out, this place was worth it. Many years ago we would sunbathe topless, bring out coolers of lunch, beer or wine coolers, and whatever because we wouldn’t see another soul all day.

Then the State found out about it and decided to create a boat launch, and you know what they did… In the words of the old song, “they paved paradise and put in a parking lot.” They created a boat launch with a parking lot and then paved another road down the path we used to run down and created a huge parking lot at the end of that. So on the upside you only have to walk a short distance up and down a hill to get to the beach, and on the downside there is usually people there. Not that people are a bad thing, my daughter always finds someone to play with, etc. But I love the peacefulness of the place. When I was asked once to imagine my favorite place on earth and this spot is where I imagined. We see bald eagle, red-tailed hawk, turkey vultures, and when we are lucky, we see blue heron. Although the blue heron are actually thriving, one doesn’t see them too often. I always figure it is my lucky day, or that I am blessed, when I get to see a heron. (The pictures I put up are from Wilkipedia, I didn't have my camera.)

Well today, the Universe, God, the energies, whatever you like to call it, wanted to let me know that I am blessed and even loved. Not only did we see a blue heron, it was a mother and it had little heron babies. The babies were swimming around crazily in little circles and would swim around and around and area and then move upstream. The mother would walk around on rocks around them or on the shore keeping an eye on her babies, but wasn’t actually too close either. When they moved upstream she would fly to a new spot to guard, and walk aroud that spot. When they fly their wingspan is incredible. We stood in the river just watching, with the sun warming our backs, and the balancing breeze cooling us off, and the solitude wrapping around us like a quilt fresh out of the drier. My normally active daughter instinctively knew too that this was an amazing time and was quiet and we were just a part of the river with minnows swimming around our feet, and not the human intruders that we actually were. Peace descended on my soul, on my entire being, and we just were. It’s been a long time since I just was.

Then some people not so in tune with nature showed up, and I tried to maintain my peaceful state, there were two women and some teenagers. One of the women did not stop talking from the minute she arrived to the time we left. Nonstop, I doubt she even looked around. At one point, they were about three feet from me and I asked three times, “Do you want to see a beautiful bird?” And not only did they not answer, they did not hear me. It’s not as if they were ignoring me either, they honestly did not hear me. As if their own world is so loud and nonstop, they couldn’t even hear my voice from three feet away, couldn’t and didn’t want to. And I surely wasn’t going to yell. The three teenagers were going crazy and having fun in the water, when they were next to me, I asked them if they wanted to see a heron. Two of them just moved on, like teens do, but one didn’t she wanted to see and followed my finger across the river and saw the bird with her babies. She thought they were awesome, but what I thought was awesome was that she got quieter. She sat on the shore and looked around, actually seeing the amazing place she was. Of course, she went back to having fun with her friends, but her whole energy had changed and she was no longer yelling with them. There is such a huge lesson in that. I couldn’t get back to the inner place I was with the never ending voice in my ear, so we left. Not that people shouldn’t go to a place and have fun with friends, of course not, I’m not being negative. I suppose they couldn’t hear me because they weren’t ready to see. A lesson for me. It was so amazing. I hope you all had an peaceful day too.I had my gift, the beauty, the stillness. I had my time as a part of nature, and I was able to explain to my child that if we are in nature and God blesses us and allows us to see the miracles of his creation, and yet if God is everywhere including in us, then we are not only part of what? She answered God. I asked and what else are we a part of? She answered nature. Years of religious study and theology couldn’t teach my child what the heron taught her this morning at the river. Thank you Heron.

1 comment:

Geoff. said...

What an idyllic place; a shame that civilization spoilt it.