I was just going through some old photo files stored on my hard disk when I came across this photo, as soon as I saw it a flood of memories came back and I was there again...
We had walked across the meadow behind the old cottage we used to live in and climbed over the five bar gate that led into the wood; As soon as I put my foot down I could feel the spongy ground thick with pine needles and I breathed in the wonderful damp cool smell.
We knew these woods well and loved to go off the beaten paths and make our way though the thick curling ferns. The slanted dappled light dancing through the canopy made the place seem magical.
In these quiet hidden inner places of the woodland we would often come face to face with its creatures, coming out of the dark green into a passage of sunlight to see a deer standing stately and silent, bathed in the almost luminous light.
It was strange that no matter how many times we explored, we always found new areas that we were sure we had never seen before.
"In every walk with nature one receives far more than he seeks." - John Muir
On one of these forays we stumbled out of the damp green interior into a clearing and there lit by a ray of sunlight, radiant amongst the blankets of dark green pines was the tree in the picture. It almost took my breath away!
I walked over and stood in front of it and made Joe laugh when I said that it looked like something special was happening and that maybe it was having a birthday. :-)
I stood for a moment just taking in the wonderful sight and enjoying the moment of sunshine, then remembering my camera, I retrieved it from my deep pockets and took the photo before we headed back into the shade of the canopy and made our way home.