If you go down to the woods today…

You’ll get eaten alive by insects.

Three bites in one half hour stroll round the woods. It’s itchy as hell.

I like the woods, they’re practically on my doorstep and I remember when they were planted.

The local wood, Coomb Briggs Wood, is one of the Millennium Woods that The Woodland Trust helped communities plant in 1999. I was sixteen; two years before my Guides and our Leader organised a community effort to plant daffodils to support the Marie Currie Cancer Nurses. Until the mid-nineties I spent much of my time on the field with friends, especially in summer.
Once I saw an elf, or possibly a land wight, sitting in the branches of one of the mature horse chestnut trees. They smiled and disappeared.

In fifteen years the little saplings have started to mature. I can walk under them now, just about; I have to duck a bit and some of the lower branches snap at times. The woods are a mix of young native deciduous trees and mature horse chestnuts. There are also saplings appearing that have grown from seeds set by the younger trees. There are also some flowering cherries in one corner. Much of the field is unmown, meaning that the new growth that used to be cut down us left to get on with it. In spring there is cherry blossom and daffodils, among the new leaves and spring buds.

Needless to say, the dogs and I are very happy. Ezzie loves exploring and jumping out of the long grass, Gyfa likes being off her lead and I like being under the trees. There’s something very relaxing about woods, even baby ones like ours.

I really don’t like coming home covered in insect bites though.

Also, it was warm an hour ago and now I’m considering putting the heating on, but I don’t like to when I also like having the kitchen door open for the fresh air.

And I have washing out on the line; if I shut the door I’ll forget it and it’ll get damp like the last load. This being an adult is complicated 😦


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