At the bottom of the woods are three lakes.
We had only ever noticed two, but coming from the opposite direction one day, a pathway we had avoided since the clearance works last year, led us along a not quite so familiar path, and we saw a third lake which had originally been hidden from our view.
Please, take a seat.
Sit with me and enjoy the peace and tranquility of a mixture of time, old and new.
I came here to this place on my own one afternoon with the dog. I needed somewhere with no distractions in order to get my head straight on so many things that had become jumbled and confused.
Sitting here on this very log, with nothing but Solitude for company, it was perfect.
I closed my eyes and let my mind drift.
The sheep graze in the field directly in front of us. You can just see the biggest lake in the distance. The dog isn’t bothered, and they are no longer curious of this black creature that pays them no heed. In the truly quiet moments, you can hear them pulling out the grass, chewing contentedly in the sunshine, like clouds adorning a green sky in an upside down world.
They are always exceptionally clean here. We have no idea why, but we have never seen one with a dirty fleece. Perhaps that third lake has been their personal spa and they take their hygiene very seriously. Imagine, a sheep with a loofah taking a bubble bath.
Listen to the rustle of the leaves as the wind teases them into rhythm. A soft gentle swell then a tinkling of patter as they come to rest after the disturbing breeze. Some days you can hear the avian morse code of a woodpecker.
There are green and both spotted varieties here.
The bird song is varied and adds its own accompaniment, even if some appear to be off key or slightly out of tempo. It has a unique beauty all of its own, and it’s a privilege to be audience to such a concert.
In the distance, you can hear the mechanics of the gravel pit as Man goes about his working day.
It is not intrusive and provides a kind of heartbeat to this place where few seem to visit. There are times when we have even heard the gentle lap of the water as it shimmers and glistens in its silvery glory. We have seen deer and foxes walking the perimeter, being too far away ourselves to be a threat, even if they are aware of our presence.
On the lake you may see a family of swans, their whiteness a beacon in the steely pool.
A squirrel scurries up a nearby tree, scratching the bark with claws I would not like to be on the receiving end of. They move so quickly, a flurry of grey and copper tinted bushy tail as they disappear into the foliage. The dog has long since given up the chase, but she will watch and indicate with a point of her nose the direction they took.
There is a concrete path between the fence in front of us and that of the field containing the sheep.
This first fence is in total disrepair, the mesh lying trampled and warped but still attached to fallen posts. A temporary fix Hubby made some time ago is still holding. Amazing what you can do with a thick twig and a piece of broken wire.
The log we are sitting on is sound, unlike the punk wood of decayed branches that lie to the left and right, perhaps they too were once resting places for walkers such as ourselves in yesteryear.
These woods were once a combined Army and RAF base, so there are ruins of buildings, shelters and stores throughout. There lies the history.
We would love to go back in time and see it how it was, before the trees were planted, when Man ruled here, and not Nature in its complex simplicity.
It would be a different and alien world to now.