I wish I had brought my camera, just… it was so unexpected! The whole thing, really. I am not even sure having my camera would have worked, however, as I didn’t even think of it until long after. Plus… they wouldn’t have liked it.
First off, my son doesn’t like the cold. Unlike me, he likes dark and rainy days, where he doesn’t have to go outside. If he didn’t have to shovel, I think he might even like the winter. But his circulation is bad, and he gets cold fast. So he doesn’t like the snow.
When the weather called for snow last week, therefore, he announced that we wouldn’t be going for our walks again until spring. That made me sad as it seems we just started again after the heat of the summer (which is even harder on him than the cold.)
It was then surprising when he asked me if I wanted to go for a walk this morning (of course I did!) We got all bundled up, and out we went. The thermometer said it was -7 Celsius when we left the house.
The nature trail is about a 5 minute walk down the street from me, if that. We cross the train tracks and go through a gate, and the trail leads along the lake-shore into town. It is such a nice walk that we hardly ever choose to go in another direction.
As we were walking and talking on the path through the snow, I was reminded of similar walks with my older brother when we were young.
“Was it next to the train tracks?” my son asked.
“Was it by the water?” he questioned.
“But it is the trees, and the snow, and the leaves,” I said. “Like the forest beside my grandparent’s house that we later bought. It feels the same,” I explained.
As we walked I suddenly saw a deer on the lake side of the trail, hopping.
“Did you see it hopping,” I asked my son, hopping up and down.
“Shhh!” he said, “You’ll scare it.”
“Right.” I usually remember that, but I was so excited. We have seen deer around often, but never on the trail. We quietly kept walking, and very quickly saw another deer up on the tracks on the other side.
It stopped and looked at us, and we stopped and looked at the deer. I silently prayed that it would know we weren’t going to hurt it as we continued on our way. It watched us pass, and whenever I looked back, it was still there. The other deer had run ahead, and was up on the tracks in front of us. I prayed that a train wouldn’t come before they had a chance to carry on (and the next two trains to come were running very slow, so all was well.)
Further up my Pastor met us, running in the other direction. He said ‘hello’ to me, or… I think he asked how I was doing or something. I responded, and realized he likely didn’t recognize my son – the last time my son was in church he looked very different. Afraid my Pastor would think I was with some strange man I quickly said, “It’s (my son.)” So that was okay.
As usual, we walked to the bridge (about 1/4 way along the trail) and then went back, passing my Pastor again along the way. That was a great walk!
My son was cold and tired as we headed back home. He once again told me he wouldn’t be walking again through the winter.
“But if we hadn’t gone, we wouldn’t have seen the deer,” I told him.
“But now we have seen the deer, so we don’t have to go back,” he replied.
Oh well, it was a good walk anyway.