Silent Retreat – no talking but lots of pics

Yesterday I went on a half-day silent retreat at a local Episcopal conference center. I have been working extra hours and could tell my brain needed some downtime. The leader gave a short talk about silence and then we all separated for two hours.

I used the first part to walk around the grounds even though it was wet and slightly muddy. The humidity didn’t bother me because it was cool. I stayed mostly on the gravel roads because there was poison ivy all over the woods. Soon after the lodge was out of sight I saw a brown bunny hopping across the road!

Everything was green and the air was wondrously heavy with the scents of honeysuckle and jasmine. I could hear a lot of birds and only a little noise from cars on the surrounding roads.

After a while I found a picnic pavilion with dry picnic tables under the shelter. When I went in, some birds in a nest on one of the light fixtures scattered in every direction. I took off my socks and shoes and lay down on a picnic bench looking out over a pasture or under the picnic table at a spider in a web. This was most pleasant so I stayed a long time and stretched out my leg muscles which were tight from the previous evening’s ballet class. I had not planned on contemplating anything in particular, but wanted a time in which I would not have to think.

After the period of silence we had a communion service- very Episcopal and formal – and then ate lunch where we were able to talk to each other. The whole experience was most refreshing and I will definitely go again when it starts back in the fall.

Various fungi. I like fungi because it grows so randomly.

Tree roots exposed by erosion

Peeling bark

A waterlogged iris

A fallen gumball suspended in some grass. I took this for Gwensdad because he hates these prickly things.

I saved the best for last. Can you tell what it is?

It is a hole in a tree stump filled with water. I didn’t know the tree and sky reflection was there until I downloaded it!

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