Tuesday, April 12, 2011

So let me recap this story: On Sunday, late in the afternoon, as my husband and I walked through Fahnstock State Park, I saw something so strange, I am not even sure it was real! It had been a pretty wonderful walk through the Appalachian Trail out onto the Blue Traail that takes you through Putnam County. We had gotten started a little later than we should have and after about 90 minutes of walking, we realized we were a bit disoriented when we came to a fork in the road with Blue Trails heading in both directions! At this point, we could have gone back the way we came and been back to the car in abouther a little over 90 minuets! (It was going to take longer to get out than to come it because it was going to be up hill ALL way back.) OR we could head off on the RIGHT Blue Trail and be back at the car in just about 15 minutes! The only really BAD choice would be going the wrong direction which would likely mean a LONG night out in the woods.

I voted for going back the way we came in; however, my husband was tired and wanted out more quickly (plus he dreaded the long uphill climb and I am sure my inevitable complaints!). In order to prevent the disaster of a night lost in the woods, we agreed to each take one of the "forks" and walk for JUST five minutes to see where we were headed. Then, we would meet again at the fork and decide what to do!

I had just left my husband to explore which direction we should go. I was tired - frankly exhausted -and the sun was already begining to get low in the sky. As I came over the ridge of the first hill I saw the brightest of lights ahead of us. The lights were blinding but even more than that, the lights were like a giant magnet pulling me closer and closer and closer. I could feel myself moving faster and faster and faster until finally I began to see a huge group of animals huddled around a magestic fire pit. There must have been hundreds of deer, skunks, squirrells, possums, birds....they were everywhere. It appeared they were all together celebrating of at least enjoying each other's company! And before I knew it, I was in the midst of them all....right near the fire pit where the deer were warming their hooves and a group of beavers were smiling proudly. My heart was beating very rapidly at that moment and while I was in the midst of them all....they totally ignored me. I was scared to death. Where was I? What was happening....? I still get kind of sweaty just remembering my panic at that moment. This was NOT something I had ever heard of before....creature of the forest celebrating what I wondered?  What would YOU have done if YOU had been in this situation?

I spent a while just taking in my situation and deciding that I was either a) insane, 2) dehydrated, 3) hallucinating, or 4) imagining my situation.  It appeared the animals were talking but they were NOT talking in English.  It appeared they were celebrating, but there was not a real party in which I could partake.  So, I sat and watched....and listened....and silently planned  my escape.  There was no one talking TO me and in fact, they did not even appear to know I was in their midst.  The larger animals seemed totally consumed with eating and sharing their food with each other.  The birds and other small animals seemed very happy to just be together sharing time.....and so I wondered.....what if I just walked SLOWLY away?  Would the forct that pulled me in continue to draw me back to the fire?  Would I be able to walk away?  Would I be able to find my trail? Would I find the RIGHT trail back to my fork IF I COULD GET AWAY?  My mind continued to race and my hear was beating faster and faster.  I was sure that I was losing track of time and that my husband would be FURIOUS with me about my "getting lost!"  He would proabaly consider the scenerio I would describe as a BAD DREAM - IF I EVER GOT BACK TO THAT FORK....

But, I knew I had to do something as this was NOT my world and it really appeared that these animals did not RECOGNIZE or care about me ONE

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