Thursday, February 17, 2011

A Winter Walk

One of my favorite things to do is go for a walk. Whether it's in Hokkaido, Tokyo, Osaka, or here at home, there is no better way to see the landscape. Since landing in Wisconsin earlier this month, I've walked nearly every day until injuring my Achilles. (Good footwear, as always, is pivotal to overall health.) Winter is my favorite season, and so I take any chance I can get to get out and about in that cold crisp air I dearly love. Here are a few photos of some old friends I met along the way while walking to Ambry Farms.

Oriental bittersweet on an old fence line. There is a native Michigan version, but it's tricky to tell the difference. Their orange pods are a sweet little dash of color in the landscape.

Ever since my mom used the seedpod outers to make mice as part of a Halloween decoration when I was in the third grade, it has been one of my favorites. I spotted some on the drive home from the airport, and shouted with delight. There's just something about them that looks like home to me.

Oaks are, to me, the signature tree of my Midwest. Many still hold their brown leaves in the gusting winds, but many of those same leaves scuttle across the drifted snow, too. I'd forgotten their signature shape and the different textures of white and red oak bark, and how large they really are. This beautiful beast surrounded by its progeny is one of many I met along the roadside that day.

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