Dialing Into Detail

The cicadas shrieks were loud, the wind steady from the NNW; a weather event was brewing, without a doubt those signs together grabbing attention.
Mosquitos didn’t fly much, yet clung to my body sucking blood, choosing to get busy while the going was good.

Lighting a small leaf fire to smoke them out took a little longer because humidity was sky high- everything spoke of a

rain event, even that inner body feeling was distinct; time to gather wood, for the next few days would be wet.

Alone
Living free, solo and immersed in the natural world is an incredible thing. You never disconnect and remain paralleled to what’s happening around you – by paying full attention to the minutes, seconds and variations. (awareness)

About two week’s earlier it had been hell hot, dry with dangerous fires burning in the region. Fortunately they were extinguished by a storm front with heavy rains, now a similar weather scenario was about to unfold.

On the seafront the tide was pushing back in, my dinghy high and dry, no radio, no industrial sound, just unity with the nearby creatures and environment.

The NNW wind pushed into base camp at around 12 knots, a constant breeze, no changes in velocity, just a steady movement of air heading inland feeding the approaching front.
The chorus or lack of sound from animals helps identify nature’s plan. The row of storms couldn’t be seen because camp was among thick, dry rainforest, the horizon obscured from view. No phone to check radar, nothing, just you, the bush and the sea.
Eventually you hit tune, to the point you’re wilder than a suburban human, heavily immersed, operating on a different medium, reaching limitations, identifying links between living creatures and forces of the earth.
Limitation is where on our own we’re no longer able to grow, and keep seeing things from the same continuous perspective, only expanding by forcibly altering thought process or seeking direction from others around the world.

Back to the story…

There’s a level of peace while resting in a cool breeze, quietly listening to every second of detail, insects, birds and active animals knowing that time is ticking and a storm about to hit. That deep rumble of thunder to the SW set the mood as if the best TV channel in the world.

After an hour of grumbling the cool bit happened, the wind that blew all afternoon eased rapidly to zilch (in a matter of seconds), changed direction in another tick of the clock and instantly every living creature ceased audio like their switch was turned to mute, and within a further few seconds the thunder boomed and the storm began. Not another whisper from a cicada, bird, gecko, NOTHING, no lag or domino effect, just an instant end to their chatter as if being held at gunpoint. Their happy time was over, the shush button had been pushed.

Watching and living through micro-changes is one of my passions. Not only had the animals altered behaviour, yet now the tide had risen, opening my window to go to work, mudcrabbing. No ifs or buts, you have to merge, or miss out.

Storms hit hard, at one point 50+ knots of easterly wind belted the dinghy which forced a 180 degree turnaround for camp. That gust vanished so I continued on working two hours through a series of wild cells that tested wits and nerve with lighting seeming at arm’s reach. That clean fresh feeling, working in torrential rain where boat and body gets a free bath and the heart and soul electrified. All senses heightened, you’re alive, on full edge. Sight, sound, taste, touch, smell, every channel filled with natural information, no disturbance to the free flow between man and nature.

Eventually work was complete and laying back on a swag in a calm, now saturated, dark environment listening to those storms roll well out to sea was a surreal experience, and not one animal sound for hours….

Living and feeling micro environmental changes while watching and listening to wild animals during the days, hours, minutes and seconds prior and after such events are what I refer as priceless, magical moments that help unravel the mysteries of nature.

It’s like a giant game of Cluedo, a mega puzzle right before your eyes. If one piece is missed it can feel like an eternity before a similar situation unfolds and you get another chance to play.

If I mentioned what triggered the next round of audio from the land animals where the hours of calm silence crackled back to life like a radio finding station, it’s highly possibly the information would be laughed at….so we’ll save that for another day or for the totally open mind wanting to learn.

The wild open spaces, there’s nothing there until you connect!

Johnny Mitchell

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