Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Trees by Bike

As a child, I had an interesting bond with trees and I was convinced that they were more than just willowy plant life towering above my head. Many stories were told about the trees speaking to me, and I have to admit, I spent a lot of time talking to them as well. There has always been something imposing, noble and trustworthy about the trees to me.
Having experienced my share of both friendly and sinister looking trees, I am constantly entertained by both the leafy and leafless variety, depending on the time of year. As I browse through photos, I realize how many times I stop to take longer looks. It's almost as if they call to me and I cannot help but stop and take in the experience.
Watching the trees change from their dormant state into full, green life is absolutely breathtaking each and every year.
Riding by in the dead of winter, there is something about the branches tangling and crossing, intertwining with one another, and seeing the bark fully exposed that seems to mirror human life.
I am reminded every season that beauty returns in all its different forms. From the very greenest of greens to the autumn colors and back to bare branches, the trees offer their own take on life, their own wisdom gained through the years.
More importantly perhaps, I am provided with reminders of just how very small and insignificant life can seem and still be entirely complicated and ever-changing. Although those thoughts can happen while staring out at the vast ocean or when trying to count the stars in the night sky, nothing seems to transition and morph quite like the trees.
When riding through your days, what speaks to you? Do you have a particular animal, plant or other interest that captures your attention as seasons change?

8 comments:

  1. I am always aware of trees, whether they are bending in a summer storm or changing colors in Autumn. Currently, I am watching locust trees. There are quite a few in our region and currently they are leafless in spite everything else is in full blown bloom. Locusts are gnarly looking trees with deep grooves in the bark, but when they eventually leaf and bloom the grape-like blossoms are filled with a lovely scent. I look forward to the locusts catching up with everything else.

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    1. It's interesting to watch everything bloom at different times too. While some trees have been completely green for several weeks now, there are still some here that have no leaves at all. I've watched one out our front window since March that just bloomed in the last week. It was interesting because everything around it was green and that one just seemed to refuse to leaf.

      Glad I'm not the only one who notices as the trees go through their changes. :O)

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  2. I'm with you on trees - the majesty and romance. But right now the London Plane trees are blooming and shedding and i can't breathe and my eyes itch and.... they are beautiful trees but this is torture.

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    1. Yes. Yes. and Yes. I am with you on the inability to breathe and allergy-like symptoms presently as well. As much as I love watching the changes, I haven't been able to breathe properly for weeks. I think I am particularly allergic to Juniper and Cottonwood, as when they are blooming things seem to be really bad for me. As an added bonus, I'm also allergic to grass, so as everyone waters and cuts their lawn this time of year... well, you can imagine how much fun it is. :O)

      I love watching everything turn green again after winter, but it can definitely take its toll.

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  3. For me, it's trees and stormy skies. Here in Memphis we have a lot of blooming trees that come into flower and leaf serially. First the tulips trees, then the cherries, and finally the redbuds and dogwoods. My commute is stunning from March through May! We also have enormous thunderstorms here from spring through fall. They roll in across cloud darkened skies and leave all the colors below saturated -- the rich, deep browns of tree trunks against the crisp greens of leaves and grasses. It takes my breath away.

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    1. Stormy skies are interesting too. I'm always fascinated by the quick nature of them in this area through spring and summer. It's amazing how it can be bright and sunny and then suddenly a torrential downpour hits with thunder and lightning. I am grateful that usually they pass quickly though, so even if I'm out riding and get pelted by ice or rain, at least I can usually stop and let it pass and get back to riding. :O)

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  4. I've been meaning to comment on this post because during last month's 30 Days of Biking, I thought so much about the visual intoxication of the all the flowering trees (cherry and magnolia, for example), and how it caused me to overlook or not prioritize trees like the oaks and willow. So this month, I've been spending more time near the trees that don't flower, but still possess and imposing beauty. I've also been enjoying my rides by the Potomac. I appreciate it so much, not just because it offers relative peace in the city (especially in the morning), but because I grew up in the middle of Iowa where there were no rivers near my town. So it's such a gift to see it every day.

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    1. An excellent observation. I think it's easy for me to get caught up in the flowering beauty - especially when coming out of the dead of winter. All of the bright colors are so overwhelming, but entirely welcome after seeing so much brown and grey. As autumn ends though, I know I'll be just as ready for the gnarled tree branches lacking leaves. It's fascinating to me to be aware of this, and yet still look forward to it. :O)

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