Wilderness Skills kicked off our first day of courses back at the Hollow today. The land smells of honey and hay and is showing the first colors of Autumn. Despite being busy all day, the breathing of the land filled my heartbeat with rhythm, grounding, and solace. It was good to be back.
The Skills posse is small this year - just the four die-hards and their devoted mentors. How I love their familiar faces and newly grown vertical inches. How I love their glowy eyes and sighs of "finally" when they return. How they bring the stories of the land to life.
I long sometimes to go back and ride a day in their boots. And vicariously I suppose I do. As they pressure flake, swamp-walk, groundhog skin, cattail eat... I feel if nothing else at least the next generation will be able to make a fire and feed me if necessary:). Even if only theoretical - it serves a profound need of mine to see a few children into adulthood with some valid Earthskills.
Despite not hiking the trails today, the land seemed to come to me. The wild grapes line the rock walls, the chipmunks chirp outside my office door. The amaranth punctuate the meadows, and the wild cucumber; unruly with spines.