There has been no international travel of late but, just recently, I had the pleasure of travel to cottage country in Ontario.
Over six months ago now, I returned from Morocco just in time for the lockdown.
What was then surreal is now fairly normal.
Over these many months, Tracey, Simon, and I have spent a lot of time considering what to write and how to manage the blog when we’re not traveling. We’ve tried to balance publishing some travel posts for those who still can travel (we write for people all over the world) and some posts for those who can't.
Last week, the three of us headed a few hours north of Toronto to a cottage near South River to spend a little time away from the speed of the city and to take a break from taking care of Solo Traveler.
Seeing the Trees for the Forest
We are, all three of us, urban. A few times a week, I'm into Toronto's parks by bike but that's not the same as being right out of the city. Travel to cottage country gave us a lot of forest bathing time and time to relax. And with relaxation, questions arose.
Why do the leaves at the top of the tree change color first?
Do chipmunks always have stripes or is that a small squirrel?
Did those two ducks that just swam under the dock whisper to each other?
That relaxation helped us to see, shall we say, the trees for the forest. From morning coffee on the deck to wine at sunset on the dock, we observed the details of nature and wondered what we were seeing. Without the knowledge amongst us, we turned to the internet. While we spent considerably less time online, it was not a complete digital detox.
Here are the answers to those questions.
- Since the leaves at the tip-tops of trees are furthest from the roots, nutrients stop reaching them first (fewer nutrients = less chlorophyll = bye bye green). Source
- All chipmunks have stripes. It was a small red squirrel that was chasing the chipmunk away from our snacks. Our research also showed that the red squirrel is known to eat chipmunks. Source
- Ducks do whisper! In fact, you can determine the sex of a duck by whether they quack (female) or whisper (male). Source
It was a wonderful week of reading, cooking, wine, knitting (in my case) and Scrabble. Competing with our editor and my husband the poet and aphorist, I lost every game.
Ah well, what I hoped of the week was delivered. Fresh air, nature, beautiful fall colors and no responsibilities.