With the arrival of spring comes a dramatic and welcome change in my weekends. After hibernating for the past four months it felt wonderful this past weekend to break out my mud boots and backpack and tote my camera on a little adventure. A bit of a gypsy at heart, I tend to wander and I love getting lost, especially when it leads me to places I’ve never been or didn’t expect. “Not all who wander are lost.” by J.R.R. Tolkien is one of my favorite lines from one of my favorite poems. Truth is, it’s during these aimless wanderings that I feel the most found. Whether listening to my IPod or just taking in the sounds of my surrounds, I feel at peace and able to completely clear my mind of all the day-to-day craziness that can bog me down. It also lends itself nicely to my love of photography. Being clear-minded lets me focus more on all the beautiful around me and I enjoy trying to capture it.
A couple years ago I discovered some great trails just outside of downtown Des Moines. When I woke up Saturday feeling desperate to just get out and walk I decided it would be the perfect place to explore. Having only been there the one other time, I had no idea just how many trails there were and how far they went. Admittedly, I was slightly thrown off by the bicycles that would occasionally come out of the clear blue but when I discovered a more open path that led me to these train tracks I relaxed and was even able to overlook the abundance of litter that I found along the way. With trees on either side, I found myself standing there just listening to the silence and starring down the tracks. When I realized that I was smiling like a silly-school girl who had just been kissed by her first crush, I decided that I wanted to capture that moment and that given given I was standing on an operating track, I should probably be quick about it and hoped that the people out on the trails didn’t see me and wonder if had lost my mind. A thought that grew more pronounced when I found myself practically laying down on the tracks to get the angle that I wanted. Still lost in the peacefulness of my thoughts and grateful for the opportunity to take it, I wandered back to my jeep and headed home.