I lived in North Carolina for six years, and while I was there, I dated a forester. He was cute, and a kind man, but (not and) was a bottomless well of tree trivia. I guess that my back porch offered a view of about five kinds of oak trees, as well as cedars, spruce, and pines and he was keen on teaching me all about these trees:
“Carla, what kind of tree is this one here? And this one? And that one?”
The trouble was that although my interest in the forester was high, my interest in the forest was low. To amuse myself, I developed my own tree taxonomy:
What kind of tree is this one?
What kind of tree is that one?
Things didn’t work out with the forester.
As I was hiking along Caliper Lake Provincial Park‘s Nature Trail, I realised that I’d developed another binary taxonomic system, one didn’t involve passive aggressively needling a boyfriend. You see, I saw a spot and thought, “that spot there, would be a perfect place to have a second breakfast.” At that moment I realised that there were Elf forests and there were Hobbit forests and that I was in a Hobbit forest. What made it a Hobbit forest was the abundance of nooks and crannies ready-made for naps and picnics.
This second breakfast spot was a cosy cubby, nestled beside a boulder and blanketed with thick, soft, dark green moss. The sun shone through the leaves of a Not-Christmas tree, creating a dappled shade that promised good napping after breakfast.
This forest has trails winding through a thick understory. If you explore the Nature Trail, you’ll clamber over slippery rocks and scramble up a couple of steep hills, so wear good shoes. And bring a breakfast or two.