THE WEATHERMAN PROMISED mostly sunny skies Sunday in southern Minnesota. But predictions and reality don’t always match. Rather than sunshine here in Faribault, grey skies prevailed, matching my mood.
I needed a walk in the woods, an escape. Time to envelope myself in nothing but nature, in the muffled quiet of traversing a snow-covered trail winding through River Bend Nature Center.
There is something about trudging through snow, about pausing to study the bark of a naked tree, about tipping your head upward toward the sky, even if it is grey, that temporarily nudges away heartache.
So I walked with my husband through the sparse landscape of black-and-white. Sparse words. Silence in between. A Robert Frost poem. Only the sporadic cross country skier interrupted our solitude.
Occasionally I stopped to snapshot a scene. When my fingertips ached with cold from photographing birds in 27 degrees, I wove across the patchy ice of the parking lot to our Chevy.
There I photographed my final nature scene on a license plate.
Then our car wound back through River Bend, past snowy woods and a frozen pond, past the razor wire fence and grounds of the Minnesota Correctional Facility, Faribault (which sits right next to the Nature Center), back to reality. Still shrouded by grey skies.
© Copyright 2016 Audrey Kletscher Helbling