Birds sang me awake amid morning sun that exploded through our bedroom window. It wasn't long before I was out fulfilling a promise I made to myself last week. I promised to head into the gully as soon as the weather invited me.
I already knew the planned trip was a good idea, but it was an one my body rebels against even as my soul aches to explore the gully's treasures.
Gully's, by definition, are steep hillsides. My gully is no exception. Spring is when the gully pulls me the hardest. Spring, when the trees are bare of leaves, leaving the land exposed. Spring, when morning's first light touches the hillside.
Lets just say that I am a "mature" woman with what Mma Precious Ramatswe of Alexander McCall Smith's novel, The No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency, would call "a traditional build." At this point in my life, I don't want to fall and going into the gully will result in at least one fall.
Damp, decaying leaves are the focus of a battle between decay and gravity. The earth desperately works to claim the leaves as bugs, damp and fungus decay them, turning leaves into soil. But, just as fervently gravity pulls at the leaves trying to convince them to slide on down to the creek at the bottom of the hill. It is a delicate balance between these two powerful forces. One misplaced human step will loosen the earth's hold allowing the leaves to propel downward accompanied by the foot that set them in motion. A "traditionally built" woman will follow closely behind the foot.