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“So what are you thinking and feeling right now
whilst you’re out there amongst Nature?”

I feel free! I feel open! I feel hopeful! I feel me!
I feel like I could touch the sky with my finger
just like I am touching the muddy ground with my booted feet.
I feel warm! I feel energized!
I feel home! I feel blessed
as the beautiful and golden sunlight touches my eyes!

As I walk through the forest though it is cooler
because the sun is radiating and being absorbed by the surrounding trees.
I can hear birds and the rustling of unseen animals all around me,
but they are so high and fast they are the dwellers
of this fertile land and sky that I cannot see.

Coming back here brings back so many memories!
Coming back here reminds me of so many happy times,
and it is like they are still there to be remembered
and felt by the touch of the cool but magical breeze.

Walking the fields, walking over the crisp brown leaves
and sumptuous green grass,
I have this sensation of feeling like an animal feels,
I have this urge to walk and run and forge my own path.

Everything is bright, everything looks new.
Everything I see is bathed in light,
and even that which is in the shadow cast by something else
retains it’s beautiful natural colour and hue.

The country lanes I walk have no natural footpath,
so I must walk on the road.
Cars and 4×4’s race past me and create a splash
as they drive through the puddles I too pass through-
out here there is no such thing as a Highway Code.

Out here where I walk there are little oasis’s
of rarely seen and hardly touched patches of Earth
that resemble my kind of heaven.
Out here you can hear nothing but your own heart beating in your chest,
sweet birdsong in the trees, and the faint sound of an airplane
flying high above in the sky that is skirting and almost touching
the atmosphere and making dreams a reality
and the passengers on it feel as if they are light as a feather.

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The smell of freshly-mowed, dew-speckled, fragrant grass-
the colour of the rolling hillsides of the English countryside,
the colour you would only find elsewhere in Eden-
transports me to a field in Austria,
where the air is clear and open and stretches for miles,
and in the distance the horizon is filled by the imposing sight
of the snow-tipped Untersberg mountain.

The feeling of raindrops falling on my head, running down my face-
the taste of natures tears on my lips,
in my mouth, on my tongue, down my throat-
relocates me to Brazil,
to the base of a thousand year-old tree at the heart of the Amazon Rainforest,
in-awe of all the sounds of life that I am hearing all-around:
the smells, the colours- all resonating singularly and harmoniously
to a single beautiful note.

The sight of a rainbow arching across the sky,
the sight of every colour imaginable reflected in fresh puddles on the ground,
and in the gaze of wide-eyed on-lookers-
takes me over oceans and kilometres
to the town of Bluff on the South Island of New Zealand,
to witness the breath-taking spectacle that is the aurora australis-
silently dancing before me, and leaving me frozen in wonder.

The sound of Bumblebees buzzing in the sunlight,
going from one garden to the next-
evolves in my mind to become
the sound of a hummingbirds wings beating without rest;
and at the same time that I am in my garden in England,
I am also in the hot Sonoran Desert in Mexico-
equally entranced by the sound, so much so that I am lost for hours.
And in the time that I am lost,
I find within me and around me all that is delicate, beautiful, alive,
and to be found all-year-round in natures showers,
and especially in the petals of April Flowers.

While I lay in my bed the previous night,
a blanket of fog had risen and had covered my home;
while walking the streets and the lanes of my village,
in the early hours of the morning,
details and landmarks were obscured to me-
it was like everything was covered in foam.
The mist before me was thicker than I had seen in a long time-
it was as if my home was floating in the sky,
surrounded on all sides by cloud,
with the light of lamp-posts dimly shining like stars in a line.
It felt like I was not only walking around my home,
but also walking the pavements of my own misty mind-
the cold of the morning had stolen my thoughts,
as the fog had stolen my vision-
making me effectively blind.

There was no wind, but the air all around was bitterly cold;
there was no frost to be found on the ground,
but it felt like I was at the North Pole-
if it were not for my coat, my scarf,
and the fact that I never stopped for a second,
I believe that I would have been frozen to death;
and if it were not for the sound of my own foot-falls,
I would have thought that I had gone deaf.
There was no one to be seen, and this was 8.30 in the morning;
I found myself missing the sun more and more,
every minute without it felt like we hadn’t had a proper day’s dawning.

The green fields that I rambled across could still be seen under-foot,
but from a distance you could be forgiven
for mistaking them for ghostly-white-
no rabbits to be spotted emerging from their burrows,
nor any birds to be witnessed above in full-flight.
It was like everything- all life, but me- was frozen below the surface,
or still tucked-up in their bed;
while I carried out my morning ritual, as best I could
considering I couldn’t see what was ahead.

As soon as I reached the tree-line of my favourite wood,
a smile came across my face at the sight of this special place to me;
for reasons so complex and important I cannot describe, if only I could;
however, what I can say is that the trees that inhabit this forest
have an energy to them that I have felt no where else-
every time I come back, I feel like I can just be myself.

As soon as I walked among the trees,
the sound of life returned to my ears, and I felt free-
the smell of the trees, the sound that they make when they sway;
the wing-beats of a hawk flying through the trees-
overcame my own personal fog, and got inside of me.

As I stood there,
taking in everything that my senses would allow me to comprehend,
as sunlight streamed in and bathed me in light so clear and energizing,
I thought that I could stand there forever through every element
and season of nature until my end.

Every time I come back to this place
the experience is even more moving and profound than the last-
rain, snow, or sunshine,
wet, freezing, or baking in warmth,
the time that I spend here is just what I need-
it never goes too slow, or too fast.

When I exit the forest, and return to the outside world,
blue-sky and bird-song is everywhere around me,
and there is the faintest aroma of a cooked English breakfast on the breeze,
as leaves before me twist and swirl.

All is right with the world again,
and all is right again with me.
I have a smile on my face,
I can think clearly,
and I can see.

I think about the woods, the trees, the fields,
and how lucky I am to live where I live,
what it all means, and how when I am here I never feel alone-
and I thank my parents for raising me in this place of perfection-
the Centre of England- so that I may call it the place where I belong,
the place I love, and the place where I shall always call my home.

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