Miranda’s Daily Blog: Day 141
I’ve just been enjoying sitting on the deck quietly observing the moonlit landscape. I probably I say this all the time, but it is amazing how different the view looks day to day. Tonight I could almost have been looking out across the desert or the ocean stretching infinitely into the horizon. Thick white cloud lies low across the valley. Instead of its usual habit of ebbing and flowing over mountains and into valleys, or softly blending the tree line gently into the sky… tonight it sits flat, a white horizontal line dividing the sky from the dark depths of forest below. It is like the world has been given a bowl cut. There are no contours, no mountain ranges, no tall trees even dare to poke their heads above the line.
I sit looking into this new horizon. The forest around me is completely still, a stark contrast to the rest of the day. Now it is so quiet that the only sound I can hear is that distant sound of the water rushing, from the collective creeks in the valley. I like this sound. It reminds me too of being in the Florentine Valley. From the tree sits there it is about the same distance to Mount Field as I am now, just a different orientation. And on the days after snow fall, you can hear the heightened sound of the snow melt as it rushes through swelling creeks and cascades down numerous waterfalls on the mountain. Even from this distance, the sound of all that water travelling along hundreds of different paths down the mountain echoes over the valley and into the tree tops.
This picturesque evening is not what I would have imagined when I woke up this morning. I have to be honest and say I felt a little bit grumpy. I awoke with a chilling breeze like a slap on the face. My tarp, still ripped at the bottom, just does not tie down well anymore! I had a good system worked out, but after dismantling it on a sunny day, I couldn’t quiet put it back in place! Now there are blankets in a haphazard attempt at recreating a wall. Every gust would have them billowing inwards, crowding the already small space and allowing the cold wind to blast its way in underneath. And of course, that is right in line with where my face is as I lie in my swag. I roll over with a bit of a grumble. The air is getting its wintry bite. I don’t want to get out of my sleeping bag. I consider staying wrapped in its warmth all day!
But of course I have to get up sooner or later, so it might as well be now. When I sit up I notice the next thing that will make me grumble. Beside my swag lies a soggy wet book. My friend had sent out a book, with a note saying it’s one of her favourites. I just started reading it last night and was really getting into it, looking forward to today’s reading session. But I’d accidentally left it by my swag, and that pesky wind had shoved aside the blankets and tarps to let its friend the rain get a look in, right in the spot where the innocent borrowed book lay. (Sorry Zoe, if your reading this!). The good news is that I had crew on the ground today, warming themselves by a lovely camp fire (hmmm… that does sound nice). And so I sent the book down and they carefully and diligently dried it page by page, being careful not to let it to close to the fire of course! It was returned to me after steaming by the fire… with a little note from the ground crew saying “I don’t know what genre your book is, but this puts a new meaning to ‘steamy novels’!” So, it’s not quiet good as new, and looking a bit worse for wear, but it is readable, so at least I’ll get to find out what happens in the end!
It seems that up here my life keeps following the same pattern. I get frustrated (usually relating to the cold, rain or spiders!) and then I remember how amazing and special this place is and the frustration is replaced by a sense awe and appreciation. And so the pattern seems to go over and over again. So, sorry if the story has become repetitive!
And that is how I came to be sitting this evening appreciating the beauty and silence of the forest, with its cloud-topped bowl cut. And I suddenly feel like I want to soak it all in. Appreciate and remember every little detail, every moment. I can’t believe I even wasted my time grumpy and not wanting to get out of my swag… when there is an entire forest out here to look at! And I realise that while sometimes I may be sitting here day-dreaming about a warm, cosy, dry room….the reality is that at some point in the future I will be sitting in a warm, cosy dry room and I’ll be day dreaming about being here!! There will come a time when this is over, however that happens, and I know that when that time comes I will miss this tree, this forest, this view. I will miss these quiet nights with nothing but the sound of distant waterfalls.
I know the saying is a cliché, but I think this has shown me that it is not enough to just try to “survive” this experience. It’s about “thriving” in it. Because no matter how challenging it may seem on some days, I am up here experiencing something that not many people get to. And it is absolutely incredible.
Then I started to think about what this means …. not just surviving, but thriving….. and I realised that although it is particularly relevent to me up in the tree right now. it is actually a lesson that applies to all of my life. And maybe to yours too. Sometimes it just feels like you’ve to get through it. Just got to get through the day.. Just got to get through this week, this month, this year. It happens so easily that you just end up concentrating on “getting through”, that you stop noticing things.. the things you love, the beautiful things, the things that make you happy, the things you will one day miss and wish you had appreciated more. (Of course it is easy for me to say all that, given that I do not literally struggle to survive on a daily basis in the way many people in the world do. I’m not sure, but maybe that is all the more reason to not take for granted things in my life).
I just went outside and it’s incredible out there! The landscape has completely transformed since my previous description. In fact it has reversed. The forests been swallowed up by white mist. And above them the dark mountains have appeared, distinguishing land from sky. The clouds are clearing and I can even see stars! I might finish up my blog for now, so I can go spend more time outside enjoying this beautiful night.
Please take a minute to help defend Tasmania’s ancient forests.
Click HERE to sign the online cyber action.