Afternoon in Bowness
Forty shades of green the song says, for the trees and the grasses, the plants and the shrubs, but for the lake and the hills, there is no such song. She knows only the music of the water and the earth that sing to her as she sits in her favourite spot by the boatyard in Bowness on Windermere. She notes every detail of the scene in front of her. She feels the wind ruffle her hair with playful fingers as it passes. She is lulled by lake water lapping against the jetty. Not the Mediterranean blue so admired by some. Those who are blind to the beauty of their own land, who venture abroad in search of sun and light. She has sun. She has light. She has water the colour of blue grey steel, stretching far into the distance. She has the midday sun sparkling on the rippled surface making the pleasure boats appear to drag diamonds in their wake, as they make their way to Waterside. She has verdant tree covered, pine scented fells and rolling acres of patchwork quilted fields. She has towering rocky summits and deep shaded valleys where whitewashed cottages catch the sun and reflect it back to her eyes. She has a peace and tranquillity that transcends the chattering masses that surround her. They have come in their cars, on motorbikes, by coach, train and on foot, flocking to the lakeside like seagulls in a feeding frenzy. They chatter incessantly, while promenading along the shoreline with barking dogs, crying children and mobiles held to their heads.
The roar of a military plane threatens to shatter eardrums as it races, screaming, not 100 feet above her head. It follows the line of the lake from Bowness to Ambleside before veering out of sight and earshot. Young pilots on a training exercise, she supposes, keeping low, under the radar, preparing for combat in Iraq or Afghanistan.
Looking out across the lake towards the fells she notices the foreground is now in shade. Hours have passed since she first sat down on the gently bobbing jetty. The long rays of the afternoon sun illuminate the upper slopes. A helicopter whirrs overhead and strikes out over the lake. Not an orange rescue 'copter, she thinks, grateful that no one is in danger. This is a khaki coloured military 'copter. How beautiful, she muses to fly over Windermere and the surrounding fells. How sad too, that soon those young pilots would be swapping the blues and greens for the sand and rock of a war zone.
But that would be then and this is now. Now is beauty and light and tranquillity. The song of the wind and the sun and the water, of the trees beside her and the ground beneath her feet. The earth song that fills the hearts of all who would take the time to stop and listen. The song that is heard not by the mind but rather by the soul. The song of the Universe, that rises above the din of the world, that strengthens the weak and empowers the strong. The song that she has heard since her birth and the song that will continue long after she has been returned to the Earth. The song that she will sing on her return to the Cosmos.
PLEASE NOTE: NAPAC makes every effort to remove all identifying information. Names of perpetrators are only used where there has been a conviction in a court of law. NAPAC is not responsible for the accuracy of the stories.