First Wind

One serious advantage of dog ownership is the walking. I do a lot of walking during the course of my day, but it is mostly on the way to get something done. With the dog, the walk is the task. He is busy using his nose, which leaves me some time for contemplation. I think we all need contemplation.

One of our favorite walks is along the pond dam closest to the road. And my favorite stopping place along the route is the one in the picture. I’m standing on the part of the dam that represents the tallest pile of dirt we made during construction. The old creek bed is around 20′ below my feet.

The most memorable recent walk around that route was a couple of weeks ago. I turned to admire the view, as I often do. It had snowed the night before; one of those gentle first snows of the year that paint such lovely pictures on the conifers. As I stood and stared out at the results of my efforts over the years, I noticed in the distance that the fluffy snow was starting to fall off the trees. I was witnessing the disturbances of the first wind of the morning, and it was coming right for me.

I became enthralled with this event. Tree after tree was shedding its snow, as the wind moved west towards my vantage point. Then I began to see the evidence of the wind’s approach in the tiny ripples progressing along the surface of the pond. Just before the wind hit me, I raised my arms and opened my fingers, so I felt the full force of the day’s first wind.

3 Responses to “First Wind”

  1. Candy Peterson says:

    Good thoughts, Ted! We have just come from the short film by Ken Burns, “Yosemite, a Gathering of Spirit”, shown at Yosemite NP Visitor Center. The word “transcendent” was used several times. Terry Tempest Williams calls this feeling, “ecstasy without adrenaline.” I am glad we are free to notice and express the humility and reverence that nature can inspire, both in Yosemite Valley and the rural Upper Peninsula of Michigan.

  2. Stella Hansen says:

    Nice… hope all is well at the home farm.
    Say hi to Alice enjoy Nov.
    Stella and Pete

  3. Mike Ring says:

    This makes me think of Aldo Leopold’s essay “If I Were the Wind,” which is an appropriately fall-related piece.

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