At a bend in the trail I spotted two little clumps of trout lilies, my personal sign of spring. Beyond a muddy patch I caught up with the fleece photo woman. She laughed a smoky laugh and said she was always taking pictures of trees. I said my buddy was looking for someplace free to live in retirement, so I always check out hollow trees.
We bantered awhile, and she showed me photos of odd trees, some phallic, on her phone. I had the strangest feeling of comfort, like I'd known her for years. We agreed it was good to have a hobby that gave us fresh air, exercise, and peace of mind. That laugh, that speech pattern! I almost asked if she was born in Arkansas. We visited about the changes at Oak Point with the zip line and new boardwalk seen on her recent visit, and about the improved soft trail markers at Arbor Hill since my last visit. We laughed about trees with faces. We parted as anonymous kindred spirits where the trail forked.
© 2014-2017 Nancy L. Ruder