(this is a post about me going for a walk ahaha) I’m not sure if anyone will really understand how much I love finding places…
I live in a village outside Halifax which is a couple of miles away from beautiful countryside, where I love walking. Whenever I get the chance, I go on this walk I’ve always loved which is about 5 miles long, and I always follow the same route and complete the walk in the same amount of time. I’ve lost count of the times I’ve walked that way, I’ve been doing it for about a year now, so I know it like the back of my hand. But today for some reason I got the huge urge to walk it backwards (not literally walk backwards, but start the walk where I would normally finish, and so on)
So I walked down this massive hill which I’d normally walk UP, and almost as soon as I’d started to descend, I noticed this little footpath. I thought well I’m walking completely differently to how I normally do, so I might as well go even further afield. Go mad Kate. So I walked off the road and up this little path which headed back upwards, and for about half a mile it was a noticeable path where people had walked their dogs, but the further I went the harder it was to distinguish, and after an hour I was picking my way through heather and ditches going further and further upwards. It dropped into this little wood and was strangely dark, considering the weather today. I had no idea where I was at this point, I was walking through these trees getting savaged by nettles and tripping over brambles. It was eerily quiet and I started to feel a bit uneasy when I looked back and couldn’t see which way I’d come from. I became aware of how loud and clumsy I was being, and started to feel quite defenceless, and then scared. I was really lost, and I didn’t have my phone because I never take it out with me, so I couldn’t ring mum and cry or anything. I was pushing through brambles and these tangled bushes and I all of a sudden I felt really claustrophobic and panicky. I started running out of sheer desperation and a need to escape. I’M LOST!
But then I kind of half fell through some bushes into this little clearing, and it was the most beautiful place I’ve ever been. It was completely like something from a film or a book, I didn’t realise places like it actually existed. The trees had cleared and there was this space which seemed so out-of-place, the ground was thick with this really springy moss, I felt like I was space-walking, it was so airy and soft. It covered the whole floor so it was all foamy and light green, and then sloped upwards a bit where a small tree was bent over, so it was all shady and cool, so I sat there. I kind of sank into the moss, as if it were like a cushion, and the movement sent a dozen little white butterflies into the air. It was weird, they were all kind of just meandering around on the moss and then they flew off into the air. There were small colourful mushrooms shooting up in little patches here and there, and tiny flowers all over the ground, so it looked like a decorated carpet of some sort. It was really light and warm, and there was this little clear pond in the middle of it which sent dancing bits of light flying everywhere as it reflected the sun shining through the gap in the trees. It probably sounds like nothing to anyone reading this, I can’t form the words to explain how special that places was. I just sat there for ages watching the space in front of me, there were loads of butterflies dancing around in the air, and this tiny bird kept coming to drink from the little pool. I just felt like if I sat there I would be safe forever. I don’t think I’ve ever seen anything more beautiful and I can’t even explain why. I think it was something to do with the fact that it was all mine for the hour in which I sat there in the moss under the tree. It was just me, and birdsong, the the air around me. It felt weirdly spiritual I suppose?
I found it really, really hard to leave. I kind of felt like that as soon as I moved, the place was pulling me back. I’d escaped to that place, but I remembered I still had no idea where I was. I stood up and disturbed the bird and the butterflies again and left. I picked my way downhill through more brambles and nettles and trees until I found a road about half an hour later. I just followed it until I recognized where I was and realised I was about an extra 2 miles from my original route. But hey, at least I didn’t get lost in the woods and die. I don’t think I’ll ever go back to that place, because I literally have no idea where it was, I found it by chance. I wish I’d had my camera with me so I could show you how mystical and beautiful it was, but oh well.