I woke up early full of anticipation for what the day would bring. You see, I had a free day. A day I could spend with my camera. A day away from worries and concerns. To make my day perfect I only needed two things: moving water and solitude.
I had a little difficulty deciding where to go. There's lots of water around; ponds, creeks, lakes and the Arkansas River, but those didn't appeal to me. I wanted moving water AND quietness. I happened to remember the creek where my dad and I had lunch a few weeks ago. It's such a pretty little area that's part of Hot Springs National Park.
Although it's a camp ground it was quiet with very few people around. I figured everyone must have been out sightseeing before it got too hot. There was one strange lady who rode her bike and sang very loudly in what I believe was German. Thankfully she had a pretty good voice and passed by quickly! The only other human noise was the giggles of a few children wading and splashing in the creek. The giggles of playing children always make me happy, so that didn't bother me at all.
It didn't take me long to pull off my shoes and do a little wading myself.
Walking beside the creek I came to this arched concrete bridge built between 1936 and 1937. I've driven across this bridge many times and didn't know what a beautiful bridge was underneath me.
Of course, anytime you have a blank space someone wants to fill it up. At least the graffiti is done with chalky rocks and not spray paint.
After a relaxing stroll along the creek I was ready to rest and have a snack while I listened to the gurgling water, the wind whispering through the trees, the many birds, and the occasional tree frog. Absolute bliss!
Sufficiently rested I decided to follow one of the trails in the area. This one was the shortest only .8 of a mile. It may have been fairly short, but it was up the mountainside. Up, Up, Up the mountainside! Not a bad uphill, but strenuous enough for me. The bright side, when I headed back it was all downhill!
It was a warm day with high humidity and you probably know by now that I don't tolerate heat very well. Somehow the heat in the woods with a breeze blowing and my camera in my hand isn't quite as bad. I almost turned around a couple of times. I couldn't tell how far I had gone and it was pretty warm. I kept saying I'd go just around the next corner. Finally, I'd had enough and decided to stop at a clearing I saw in front of me and head back down. When I walked into the clearing this little rest area awaited me! I had made it and I had a cool place to rest before heading back down.
My day was good; just what I needed.
I headed home feeling tired, but oh, so much more relaxed.
"Climb the mountains and get their good tidings. Nature's peace will flow into you as sunshine flows into the trees. The winds will blow their own freshness into you and the storms their energy, while cares will drop away from you like the leaves of Autumn."
~ John Muir
It's not Autumn, but the rest of this quote perfectly describes my day.