As I stepped into the woods yesterday I realized, with great disappointment, that I had forgotten my camera. Should I drive back across town to retrieve it? Should I just start walking and see what happens?
The late spring heat wave that had settled in for the weekend and the bumper-to-bumper traffic on the main road were reasons enough to just get to the matter of walking. So I did.
Butterflies and dragonflies seemed suddenly all about, no doubt anticipating summer.
Bullfrogs were singing from the pond, and a turtle or two played hide-and-seek as I passed.
There were telltale signs of wildflowers just past their bloom and the smell of recent rain permeated the trees.
And then, in front of me, a stunning black rat snake was sunning himself in the middle of the path.
I reached for my camera, then remembered it was back at home. So the snake and I just accessed each other for a while and parted ways, he to the safety of underbrush and me to the back half of the trail — up and around the grove of pine trees, across the stream and back to the parking lot.
I found myself remembering that you never really know what’s going to happen in front of you. Whether you come prepared or not, whether you have a plan or just wing it, what comes next comes.
Maybe you get an awesome photo of a beautiful black snake, or maybe you get the bigger picture.
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©2013, Jen Payne