“Showy Lady Slipper – 2018”
“The beauty of that June day was almost staggering. After the wet spring, everything that could turn green had outdone itself in greenness and everything that could even dream of blooming or blossoming was in bloom and blossom. The sunlight was a benediction. The breezes were so caressingly soft and intimate on the skin as to be embarrassing.”
― Dan Simmons
Here we are, freshly into summer. I have found myself longing to get on the trails, to explore the changes the past month has brought. I sought to find the many groves of wildflowers, so familiar to me these past few years. Most of all, a craved the crunch of the ground beneath my boots and the sweet smells and familiar sounds of the forest.
Work has consumed my time, has left me drained and uninspired. I’ve been out walking, in town, just to clear my mind and then back to the routine. My free time has been spendt simply trying to catch my breath and come down from the non-stop urgency of my job.
As I sat reviewing some of the photos from last year, it became clear to me that I was sacrificing something precious. I was abandoning the very thing that gives me energy and creativity. I was giving up being ‘in’ nature. How I got to this point is simple, it was a slow and steady increase in keeping up with the increasing demands of a job that requires years of acquired knowledge and a great deal of creativity, combined with increasingly tight deadlines. But, I have come to realize, that the pace is only sustainable for so long. I began feeling tired, irritable, and uninspired in other aspects of my life. A few times, I took the time to set up a studio shot or two, grabbed some quick images with my iPhone, but that was it.
As I sat looking at the calendar this past weekend, I realized that it was Orchid time. The brief period in late June when the Showy Lady Slipper Orchids bloom in a local conservation area. I simply had to get out to check on them. So today, I made a point of starting my day early and taking time at lunch to step away from the desk and into the forest. As soon as I stepped off the trailhead and into the forest, the outside world slid away around me and I felt the ‘oneness’ of the trail. Even the clouds of mosquitoes were welcome, though only briefly. I was blessed by a cooler day and a slight breeze, just enough to cool me and disperse the biting insects. Within 20 minutes I stood before these lovely flowers once more. The conditions were perfect and I was able to get the shots I wanted. It’s so good to be back!
Tamron SP AF 90mm f/2.8 Di Macro 1:1 (272ENII)@90mmm
1/200 sec, f/11.0, ISO 320
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I’m glad you found time for the forest. Once you get to learn the timing of flowering of a favourite plant, their pull is very insistent – work or no work!
True. I did miss a few of my favourites this year.
So glad you shared your photo of the Showy Lady’s Slipper. I would love to (carefully) examine the beauties in this conservation area & photograph them soon. ( I can keep their location a secret).
They will be pretty much done after this hot weekend. But, they always bloom the third to fourth week of June.