Monday, June 09, 2008

Thinking Tree

I have a thinking tree. That's right, my very own thinking tree. I found the thinking tree a few months ago while out on a long bike ride on the hike and bike trail near my home. Though to be fair I am quite sure the tree doesn't believe itself to have ever been lost and therefore impossible for it to have been found; a point that I would have to concede if the tree were to actually publicly infer it. As of right now, the tree is offering no comment.

The tree is really nothing special as trees go if you ask me. It's a tall tree but there are a lot of tall trees. It has lots of lush green leaves and plays a soothing melody when the winds are up - which has been a lot lately. It splits off in a unique y formation towards the top which gives it some moniker of character and more personality than some of the other trees. But for most of you I am quite certain you wouldn't seek out this particular tree and pay it homage as some amazing find. An eighth wonder of the world I can assure you it is not.

No, the thinking tree is just there when it comes right down to it. It sits directly across from a bench that was put in by the people that put in the trail. The spot has become a perfect halfway stopping point for people like me who venture down through the trail and need a good place to rest before heading back. Though having been on the trail more times than I can count, neither the bench nor the tree seem to be attracting any use which is fine by me - I hate to share.

I discovered the tree a few months back when I started really riding my bike. It was on a perfect spring evening that I decided I needed to rest and stopped at the bench. The birds were singing and having just rained, everything smelled so fresh and alive. I found myself drawn to the tree as it swayed back in forth in the wind. I stared at it for what seemed like an eternity, but was probably more like five or ten minutes and just enjoyed the time. I was relaxed on a day that had been very stressful. I found myself smiling for no other reason than I was happy. I felt at peace and comfortable just being there.

I made several trips back to the tree over the next few days and each time a similar but uniquely new and inspiring experience took place. I found the thinking tree to be a good place to do just that - think! Hence I aptly named it as such. Every time I was on my bike, I found the bike somehow magically driving itself towards the trail and to what was now a dear old friend.

My boys which have taken to joining me on many of my nightly rides have taken to the tree too. We set out for many different destinations but no matter what we always end up paying the thinking tree a visit. Both Josh and Zachary just love jumping off their bikes, sitting on the bench and watching it for a few minutes. Perhaps somehow they are able to decompress and just think when they are in the presence of it as well. The tree has become a great place for us to talk as ideas and questions are batted about. Maybe the tree has some sort of magical powers over all of us who knows. It must be something because to get those two numskulls to sit still for even a few minutes has to be driven by a power greater than I.

Well whatever it is I am glad to have found the thinking tree. I know, I know, it wasn't lost but perhaps maybe I was and it was the tree that found me. The funny thing is I have never felt more found and more in touch with my creativity than when I am sitting near that old tree. It's incredible what a little think like a tree can do for me but maybe that's the point. It's the little things that often make the biggest difference to us.

What about you? Do you have a thinking tree or a place that you go to unplug and recharge? If not, the bench is big and I would be happy for you to join me for my nightly ride. I don't think the thinking tree would mind a bit.

Ripple On!!!


Sue said...

Oooh, lovely post!

I don't have a thinking tree at the moment. I shall go discover my own.

Arlin K. Pauler said...

Hey Steve:
I'll bet that leprechaun you spoke of several months ago that was in the back of your truck lives in that tree.
I think it so cool how our deeper Self shows up in such delightful ways.
Your friend and colleague, Arlin.

Maria Gatling said...

Great post and a great reminder of how nature serves as the perfect place to contemplate our thoughts and ideas. I think the tree found you!