“Try to walk as much as you can, and keep your love for nature, for that is the true way to learn to understand art more and more. Painters understand nature and love her and teach us to see her. If one really loves nature, one can find beauty everywhere.” ~Vincent Van Gogh
If you have stopped by for a hot cup of coffee or tea with me here in recent days, you may have been met with a seemingly abandoned virtual space that a moment ago had been quite warm and lively. I assure you, I am back at home here now, and all issues have been resolved. Change is hard in virtual spaces and now I believe all T’s have been crossed, and I’s have been dotted so that there should be no more interruption. Suffice it to say, I am deeply grateful for a hosting service that has real human beings who occasionally actually use a telephone to conduct their business. This is a gift.
“Autumn is coming fast, and that makes nature more serious and intimate still.” ~Vincent Van Gogh
This past weekend we took a small trip into the countryside of eastern Ohio where the Appalachian foothills begin to heave the land. We have had a lovely bit of autumn here, but knew it could be fleeting. It was a Sunday, so our Amish friends were tucked away in their Sabbath doings, but reminders to mind our speed on the road were still evident.
We started our time there with a quick stop in Locust Grove, Ohio where there is an old fashioned dairy bar where one can grab a bite of lunch for a song.
And across the street from there is a lovely enigmatic seller of special stones, The House of Phacops.
We have always been welcomed kindly by the gentleman who runs this establishment. When the kids were little, there were always little bits of magical quartz to be had that fit nicely in small, eager hands but didn’t ruin the wallet.
On this particular day, we were greeted by one of the shop cats who is gifted with one green eye and one blue eye, which I believe makes her some kind of magical creature.
She rolled and turned over and lolled in the sunshine, as kittens should do on a lovely fall day.
The collection of fossils and stones at House of Phacops is known all around for it’s quality and often parts of it can be found on display in other places at Natural History Museums. Ohio may seem boring to some, but there is evidence just under foot of a long ago sea bed.
But we mustn’t let the day get away from us staring at rocks. It was time to continue our journey….
With our tummies full of Dairy Bar fare we were ready for the real reason for the drive in the first place; the hike up to Buzzard’s Roost Rock, a lovely, none too difficult hike up to one of Ohio’s nicest vistas. And so we trekked…..
It was an uphill climb much of the way and so it was good to keep my eye to the ground and watch out for little treasures along the way.
They were everywhere, as forest gifts are, if we just take the time to seek them out.
At one point, we began to notice ancient boulders, strewn along the path, obviously thrown there by now long forgotten Giant Folk on the ridge top above….
…and yet I kept my eye on the jewels of the forest floor, guessing that no boulders had flown here for many aeons.
Soon the vistas began to open up and we could see traces of how far up we had actually ventured.
And so we sat to make a sketch or two.
And to look for the Buzzards who surf the thermals just off the cliff face.
I did not capture any buzzards with my camera lens, but sometimes a sketchbook is enough.