I think the Romans had a type of solid treed saddle as well, the four horned type
another fun tack fact, the romans had a number of early ‘hoof boots’, hipposandals, made of metal but not nailed on. They were a step up from just wrapping hooves in leather & so on. The nailed on shoe only appeared like 5th c AD.
I tore myself out of my own mother’s womb.
There was no other way to arrive in this world.
A terrified midwife named me Monster
and left me in the pine woods with only the moon.
My mother’s blood dripped from my treed head.
In a dream my mother came to me and said
if I was to survive
I must find joy within my own wild self.
When I awoke I was alone in solitude’s blue woods.
* * *
A woman found me and took me to her mountain home
high at the end of an abandoned logging road.
We spent long winter evenings by the fire;
I sat at the hearth as she read aloud myths of the Greeks
while the woodstove roared behind me.
She sometimes paused to watch the wall of shadows
cast by my antlers. The shadows danced
across the entire room like an oak’s wind-shaken branches.
* * *
The woman was worried when I would not wear dresses.
I walked naked through the woods.
She hung the wash from my head
on hot summer days when I sat in the sun to read.
The woman grew worried when I would not shed
my crown with the seasons as the whitetails did.
“But I am not a whitetail,” I said.
* * *
When I became a woman
in the summer of my fifteenth year,
I found myself
suddenly changed in the mirror.
My many-pronged crown had grown
into a wildness all its own;
highly stylized, the bright
anarchic antlers were majestic to my eye.
The woman saw me and smiled. “What you are I cannot say,
but nature has created you.
You are fearfully and wonderfully made.”
When night came it brought a full moon.
I walked through the woods to the lake
and knelt in the cool grass on its bank.
I saw my reflection on the water,
I touched my face.
You are fearfully and wonderfully made.
I picked up what I thought was a stray on the side of the road last night and it turns out you’re a werewolf. Um. Can I offer you some pancakes?
Hi there I know I don’t know you but I live downstairs and I can hear you through the ceiling every time you play with your dog and his squeaky toy. And frankly, it sounds AMAZING. Can I come in?
I work at the butcher shop and we’ve never spoken but I recognize you from when you come in to buy fresh meat every month. I don’t mind keeping the store open a little past closing since you’re running late and seem kind of desperate. This may be weird to mention, but did you know your teeth are getting sharper while we talk?
I know the sign says no shoes no shirt no service but I just had the WEIRDEST night and your shop is the only building with lights on this early and I’m really, really hoping you have some spare clothes behind the counter. Help?
My dog goes nuts every time she sees you and this time she got off the leash and tore after you, except now you’re both barking at each other and I’m not sure what to do.
You look REALLY familiar and I think it might be because of the feral dog I’ve been feeding a couple nights a month and oh shoot you caught me staring and you’re coming this way.
I’m really, really sorry I accidentally bit you during that kissing game at the party last night, ESPECIALLY BECAUSE I THINK YOU’RE REALLY CUTE. But, uh. I have some stuff I should tell you?
I’m a wildlife biologist and I got called out to do radio tagging and release because a coyote trapper accidentally caught a wolf except I am PRETTY SURE you are not a wolf.
Sorry I treed your cat; it was kind of an uncontrollable impulse. I’m pretty strong and good at jumping, though. Hold my bag while I go get her down.
Help my car broke down outside your place and it’s almost the full moon and I’m not saying I’m freaking out but do you happen to have handcuffs and how do you feel about using them on strangers.
Carter’s expression had begun suspicious when Siff started to explain her plan, then changed to incredulous as she watched. Eventually he settled on a blank stare as she finished. Siff waited for him to process everything, and she kicked her legs back and forth idly in the air.
They were still treed by the swamp monster, with Siff sitting on a thick branch, hands resting on the rough bark in case she lost balance. She wouldn’t, but the way the day had been going, Siff wasn’t about to take that risk. Carter sat on a branch slightly below hers, one of his hands on the tree’s trunk. Siff was trying very hard not to notice how certain abdominal muscles were flexed to hold his balance. His shirt was still down on the ground somewhere.
“So let me get this straight,” Carter said eventually. One of his eyebrows arched and Siff could tell he wasn’t sure she could pull her end off. Of the plan, not of…her… uh. No, focus, Siff. Focus. Focus on the plan not on his abs, damnit.
“You want to swim down into the ship that’s crashed,” funny how he didn’t say ‘my ship’, Siff noticed.
“Where the monster thing is, that tried to drown you,” he continued.
“Get gear that might not have survived the crash,”
“Mhm.” Siff had started to jiggle a foot. The wet clothes sticking to her were chilly up in the breeze.
“Which also might be waterlogged and useless-”
“It’ll work, with a bit of elbow grease,” Siff countered.
“Then set off an explosion on the ship, which is mostly underwater,”
“Well, a series of explosions-” Siff corrected.
“–Without dying.” Carter said. The eyebrow had been inching higher with each statement.
“That ‘not dying’ part’s important, yes,” she said with a nod. “At least to me. I don’t really feel like dying.”
“And you say this will help us get off-planet…somehow.”
Ah, he’d either not understood the last part of the plan or she’d not explained it right. Probably a bit of both. Probably mostly her not explaining it right, actually. It made perfect sense in her mind, but finding the words to convey the diagram and acceptable probabilities in her head to someone who was outside her head was difficult.
“Okay,” she said, taking a deep breath. Talk slow, she reminded herself. Use simple words. Not everyone likes science. “So. We are in a swamp.“
The arched brow fell into a scowl.
"Yes, I am keenly aware of that,” Carter said dryly.
“And swamps are full of decaying partic- er, rotting stuff. Like leaves.” Siff waited a beat, watching Carter. When he didn’t say anything, she continued. “Rotting stuff creates a gas called methane-”
“I know-” Carter said, then stopped. He stared at her, eyes going slightly wide. “You want to set the whole skrogging swamp on fire.”
“Well,” Siff said shyly. “Not all of it. Just enough to bring in a few ships to put out the fire before it spreads to the local methane plants. Like, the factory kind of power plants, not actual…vegetation.”
“That,” Carter said, expression of bewildered horror unchanged “Is insane.”
Siff shrugged. She’d been called worse by better people. 'Sculag’ was a particularly familiar term from back home. It meant weak-minded, though it was usually used by Chiss who were a bit more traditionally minded.
“Okay,” she said easily. Leaning her elbow on a knee, she propped her chin up on her fist and batted her dark blue eyelashes at the human. “Tell me your plan to get out of here then. I’m listening.”
“This is insane,” Carter muttered for the fifth time. Siff stood on the tree limb, balanced on the balls of her feet. She’d peeled off the extra layers of clothing, hanging them carefully over a nearby branch. Wearing a tank and leggings, Siff eyed the water below. It seemed calm, aside from the odd 'blorp’ of methane bubbles that broke the surface near the wing of the downed ship.
“You’re insane,” he said again.
“Insane is not doing anything and expecting to get magically saved,” Siff muttered, climbing down the tree. “You aren’t very good at improvising when things go wrong, are you?”
“And you’re not a very good assassin,” he countered. She could hear him following her down branch by branch.
“Yeah,” Siff said with a small sigh. “But should you really be complaining that I didn’t kill you? Shouldn’t you be happy about that?”
She hopped down the last few feet, landing on a patch of marsh grass. Looking up, she watched him jump off the tree, landing next to her.
“I’m not sure, it feels like you’re going to get me killed with this plan, and I’d rather die by bullet than exploding marsh gas,” Carter said, brushing bits of tree bark from his hands. Siff got distracted by the way the motion bunched and flexed his biceps, and awkwardly cleared her throat. He was //awfully/ well fit for a smuggler. And clean.
“Actually this is a swamp, not a marsh. Marshes don’t have trees…”
Carter gave her a look that informed Siff he was not interested in the semantics of wetland classifications. She held up her hands, and rolled her eyes. Fine. If he ever got into trouble over not knowing the difference later on, that was his problem.
“Just keep smacking the water on the other side with a branch to keep Mister Grabby distracted, okay?” Siff muttered, and stepped into the water. Her toes immediately sank into slimy muck, and she made a face. Ugh. Gross.
Wading in, Siff took a deep breath as she neared the downed smuggling ship and ducked under the water. Too murky to see, she kept her eyes closed and felt along the ship for the escape hatch on the side that they had swam through earlier. Let’s see, it was a Light Freighter class. XS model, refurbished but still factory-compliant. Siff’s fingers found the door frame, and she grabbed hold of it, pulling herself through and into the ship proper.
Feeling her way down the corridor, Siff made her way to where she’d stashed her kit before everything went to hell. Pulling the bag by it’s strap onto her shoulder, she turned around carefully. Lungs starting to burn, she reminded herself to stay calm until she could get another lungful of air.
Hand over hand, she counted the distance back to the exit hatch, and pulled herself through. For a moment, the bag on her shoulder caught, and Siff swallowed instinctive panic. She was trained better than to let a little thing like being stuck make her lose focus, she reminded herself. Reaching behind her, she guided the bag through the small hatch and kicked hard for the surface.
The rotting and putrid stench of the swamp might as well have been the clearest mountain air for all that Siff cared. It was air and it was breathable. Gulping down lungfuls, she glanced over to where Carter was facing off with a stabbed tentacle. He had a branch at his feet, and the knife she’d given him earlier in his hand, ready to slash at the fleshy-pink thing that was waving in his direction. In other words, he was fine, and she had time to get out of the water.
Staggering in the slippery muck, Siff hurried onto the bank of grass and tree roots, dropping her bag at the base of the tree that still held her clothes. It was dusk now, but there was enough ambient light for her to see, and soon there’d be two to three times that.
“Carter,” she shouted, “Time to take cover.” Unzipping the bag she pulled out the still-dry detonator for the remaining insurance she’d taken out on Carter’s ship. You couldn’t trust smugglers not to space you, so even though she’d joined his ship there were a few blinking items pressed up to the fuel core, even underwater.
Ducking behind the large trunk of the clothes-tree, Siff peeked around to see Carter running over. She scooted down to make room for him… and then flipped the switch.
For a moment nothing happened. Two, four, six heartbeats, and Siff wondered if the explosives had fallen from where she’d mounted-
They felt the boom first. It shook the tree and the muddy grass under the pair. Even through her hands, the boom was deafening. It was followed by a second, then a series of smaller hissing cracks that cut through the air. The swamp around them lit up orange and yellow as the ship’s wreckage burned. Water rained down on them, displaced from the force of the explosion. Siff was pretty sure she saw a few fish and at least one detached tentacle fly by.
Only when the explosions stopped did Siff poke her head around the tree to see how her plan had worked.
The remains of the ship were cracked apart, sitting much deeper in the water now, which had caught fire.
“Siff,” Carter said carefully, peering over her head. “The water is on fire.”
“High methane content,” she said softly, eyes wide. “A really, really, high methane content. I’ve never set water on fire before.” She looked up at him then back to the water that yes, was very much on fire. Little jets of flame puffed up where methane was richest, though a low orange flame had spread to cover most of the water. Siff let out a soft whistle. It was almost pretty.
“You… are not an assassin, are you?” Carter said, watching the swamp burn.
“And you’re not a smuggler, but I won’t tell if you don’t,” Siff countered, looking up at him.
The sign looks cheerful enough, as much as a sign can when composed of entirely letters in a sturdy black frame, but Stiles doesn’t know why he’d stopped to stare at it. Okay, that’s a lie. He does know.
Stiles is an erotica novelist, and Derek is the sexy fireman he daydreams about. He sees Derek daily at the coffee shop, writing out his fantasies about Derek, basically Derek is his muse. All goes well until Derek starts talking to him and trying to read his books. Little does Stiles know, Derek is already a fan of his books.
Even more than maps and such, look into a GPS unit - some track where you are in relation to where you started from, some have emergency signals - talk to someone at a reliable outfitters and get some advice on what’s best suited for you. Also, check in with the search & rescue services in the area you plan to go, they often have great recommendation lists of what’s needed for your specific area.
Well, fortunately (or unfortunately, depending on how you look at it) the only place accessible to me for camping is the Indiana Dunes state park, which is….small. Small and tame. :D So a GPS isn’t necessary, at least not yet. I probably will have cell service the entire time, but even if I don’t, it’s like…pick a direction and walk for three miles and you will reach someone’s backyard. :D
replied to your post “Bought a Pack for Backpacking.”
For warm weather you can make a decent tent out of a tarp. Some people almost make an art form of it, origami-fashion. Lots of instructions online if you’d like to try it.
I’ve seen diagrams of that, but it seems…breezy, even for an Indiana summer :D Plus, man, so many bugs. Though at some point, if I keep up the backpacking, I may try it – it definitely would lighten the load….
het klimaat - the climate het weer - the weather de temperatuur - the temperature de zon - the sun de zonneschijn - the sunshine de wolk - the cloud de mist - the fog de regen - the rain de sneeuw - the snow de sneeuwvlok - the snowflake het onweer - the thunderstorm de donder - the thunder de bliksem - the lightning de wind - the wind de regenboog - the rainbow de storm - the storm
de natuur - the nature
de aarde - the earth het landschap - the landscape de omgeving - the environment de bloem - the flower de boom - the tree de tak - the branch het blad - the leaf het gras- the grass de plant - the plant het bos - the forest de berg - the mountain de aardbeving - the earthquake het hout - the wood het strand - the beach het zand - the sand
het water - the water de zee - the sea de oceaan - the ocean de golf - the wave de druppel - the drop de rivier - the river het meer - the lake het ijs - the ice
de lucht - the air de orkaan - the hurricane de hemel - the sky de planeet - the planet de ster - the star de vallende ster - the shooting star
het vuur - the fire de vlam - the flame de vulkaan - the volcano de lava - the lava
welk weer is het - how’s the weather het is warm vandaag - it’s warm today het is koud vandaag - it’s cold today het regent - it’s raining het sneeuwt - it’s snowing het onweert - there is a thunderstorm
Feel free to request more Dutch / French vocabulary lists!
A/N: These next few chapter will be both smutty and angsty. Also, I guess Dís is OOC? Enjoy!
Your eyes had to adjust to the light as you got out of the vehicle and when they were adjusted, you saw a large cabin that looked more like a mansion, standing against a mountain backdrop.
The cabin-mansion stoodtall and proud like the mountain that stood behind it. It was a beautiful house, looking just as natural as the towering pine trees behind it.
“This is your house?” You turned and questioned Thorin. There was an anxious but relaxed look on his face, and while you had spent a fair amount of time with him, this look was new to you.
“This is my home, yes. But only when I’m not at school. Otherwise it’s my sisters home.” His thick hand grabbed yours and squeezed gently as his blue eyes searched your face.
“Thank you for coming home with me. It means quite a lot to me knowing that you’ll meet my family. Although you already met Dwalin.” Dwalin was a rough, tough looking man and you’d be lying if you didn’t admit that he struck fear through you.
“Not everyone is like Dwalin, are they?” A hearty chuckle from Thorin made a blush creep up your neck. Slowly, his hands met your cheeks and he bent down and placed a soft and gentle kiss to your lips.
“Not everyone is like Dwalin. Don’t worry. I have a few cousins who are rough around the edges but very soft. And my sister will love you. You’re my soulmate.” While you appreciated his little pep talk, you still couldn’t shake your nerves.
This would be your first trip together and you were going to meet his family. You weren’t even ‘officially’ confirmed as a couple, although meeting his family solidified that pretty well.
“Come on. They’re all anxious to meet you.” Fucking great. You grit your teeth and followed Thorin up the small pathway to the porch leading to this cabin-mansion.
Once you had gotten close enough to the cabin, you heard loud boisterous laughter filtering out of the front door. Each step you took made you more and more nervous for this meeting.
Thorin may have been your soulmate but that didn’t make you any less anxious or nervous to meet his family. Sure he said they would like you, but what if they didn’t? What if they hated you and never wanted you to come back?
“Mom! Stop!” You heard Kili’s voice and then another round of boisterous laughter. That all changed as you stepped into the house and then into the living room.
Soon, all eyes were on you, and Thorin who’s arm had snaked around your waist. You licked your lips and swallowed your saliva hastily. You hated being stared at by large groups.
“Mom, this is Y/N. She is Thorin’s soulmate.” A woman who struck almost a mirror image to Thorin stepped away from Fili and towards you.
Her blue eyes reminded you of Thorin’s, however hers had a hint of green that Thorin’s didn’t. Still, her facial structure and shape matched Thorin’s. And she had the beautiful dark lock he also shared with Kili.
“H-hi. I’ve heard so much about you. It’s really nice to meet you.” God. Was Thorin as nervous as you? You spared him a look and inwardly cursed as he appreared as cool as ever.
“Be nice, Dís.” He did however offer her a warning as she approached and slowly circled you.
“Hmm…” You never felt more scrutinized in your life. Even as she looked from Thorin to you, you never felt more scrutinized.
“Dís…” Thorin gave her another warning, but still she looked you over. Her blue eyes narrowed and her lips were pull back in a tight frown.
“Mother! What is this?” Thank god for Kili calling out to his mother. At the sound of his voice she turned and walked away from you, the rest of Thorin’s family following.
“She hates me. She actually hates me.” You felt defeated as you stood in the living room that was once full, now empty besides you two.
“She doesn’t hate you. She’s just…cautious.” Thorin wasn’t speaking it, but he might as well have been. She hated you and he knew it.
“What a fun weekend will this be!” You muttered to yourself as Thorin walked ahead of you, to the backyard.
As night approached, you couldn’t have been more ecstatic as new arrivals came to the house. You were even more ecstatic as a familiar head of brown curls stepped out of the vehicle, followed by his taller, dimpled mate.
Bilbo was definitely your saving grace at the moment, as he took one look at your face and departed from Bofur and made his way to you.
He latched into your wrist and dragged you away from Thorin and prying eyes. He didn’t stop pulling you along behind him until you were in a treed area away from the rest of the people.
“How bad was it?” You felt like you could cry at any time, but held it together. This would not beat you down. You would and could do this.
“She circled me like a fucking vulture looking for dead meat and then, if that wasn’t enough, all she could say was 'hmm’. That’s it! God! His family hates me!” You whined and sat on a fallen log and shoved your head into your hands.
“I’m sure she doesn’t hate you. I’m sure she’s just…cautious.” Great. The same fucking thing Thorin said. She’s just cautious. She doesn’t hate you.
“You should’ve seen the look she gave me bilbo! It was as if I was trash off the street!” Why did she not like you? You had thought you were polite and well mannered. And you did t scream trailer trash, but you also didn’t scream uptown girl.
“Well this weekend will be a chance for you to get to know her better. And make a good impression.” You ears heard the faint voice of Thorin, asking if anyone had seen you.
You sighed and stood, dusting off your jeans. You would an could do this. You would and could do this.
“Keep your head high, stand straight and don’t let her smell your fear!” Bilbo gave you a shove and stood back, laughing at the horrified look on your face.
“That damn man…” As you left the thick trees, your eyes spotted a new woman standing by Thorin. She had her hand on his chest and she was gazing up at him with hearts in her eyes. And despite his look of annoyance and discomfort, you couldn’t help but feel a stab on jealousy.
This woman looked like she stepped right out of a glossy magazine with her long legs and toned stomach. Not to mention her long red hair and hazel eyes.
“Y/N. There you are.” You bit the inside of your cheek and approached the two. Thorin was looking at you desperately for help, while your eyes were still glued to the woman.
“This is my soulmate, Y/N.” Another nasty look, this time from the redhead.
“Pleasure I’m sure.” Her eyes moved from you to Thorin. She flashed him a flirty smile and ran her hand up his chest once more, completely ignoring your presence.
“Find me later.” A wink was tossed his way and as she walked, she stopped briefly st Kili and shot him a wink as well.
“Who was that?” You were jealous. Plain and simple.
“That would be one of my exes. She was a student a few years back.” Your heart thudded in your chest. You had no idea that he was in a relationship with another student, not that you had asked, but it shocked you.
“It didn’t last long. Well it lasted long enough for her to meet my cousin and my sister.” Your eyes left Thorin and they found the redhead.
She was talking a storm up to Dís, smiles and laughter being exchanged between the two of them. She was his ex? You bit your lip and felt s fresh wave of tears building up.