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A Beltane wander

What a beautiful walk today. I was thinking about Beltane as I meandered nature and it seemed the acknowledgement of the full awakening of spring was not going to wait for May day. Just following colours and scent set my route and it started with a corridor of gorse enticing me in with its heady aroma,

before following the bluebell filled wood, which arrived at a trickling stream. I sat here for a moment, to listen to the the water and allow my worries to float off downstream, where grey wagtails monitored the dissolving worries and wonder on the perpetual flow of water.

Continuing into the verdant woodland, orange tip and brimstone butterflies danced in the sunrays and nests of hungry broods could be heard from the safety of the boughs.

The landscape changes once again into open heaths, where ponies and cows graze need to a pond and buzzards and redkites own the skies. Skylarks entertained us all with their delightful tune and apple blossom coloured the paths.

Ancient celebrations called from the ancient lands and I realised then, that without route or destination, the Beltane energy was always going to bring me here, as I turned off the path into the ancient Sloden wood.

I felt my ancestors follow me through the beautiful sculptures of oaks and yews, with a scattering of blossoming rowan trees. With so much to breathe in and to get a real sense of the wisdom in this woodland, I stood for a while within the site of the medieval hunting lodge, with a cuckoo calling above and a roe deer browsing the woodland nearby. I then wandered a little further to stop off and see an old friend. The Sloden Oak.

He is a magnificent sculpture of sprawling boughs as he stands guard over this ancient land, As he oozes wisdom, strength, abundance and joy!

Time was getting on with my walk of no destination, so after admiring the view across the barrow towards Hollyhatch,

I made my way along the sand paths and expansive vista to Splash bridge and back to the car with a smile on my face, sun on my back, a warmth in my heart and an acknowledgement towards simpler, ancient ways and the full awakening of spring!

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