After watching the sunrise this morning I headed up Durlston Castle along the coast path that sits above it’s bay. The Sun was still low in the sky meaning its rays did not have to complete with the leaves that stubbornly refused to drop from the canopy but shone almost horizontally, dodging past tree trunks and banishing at least some of the shadows that live here. Small sections of the undergrowth were lit up as if by a torch and prehistoric ferns, uncurling from the dampness of the earth, seem to reach out for the Sun. Darkness would eventually win the war but meanwhile these spot lit islands of life would appear every time the Sun found space between the trees and would move across the ground until they were eventually suffocated by shadows.
Invisible in the darkness but shining bright when in the sunlight were the silken threads of countless spiders that crisscrossed the path, evidence of smaller life here but it certainly wasn’t the spiders that were making the footsteps I could hear! Now we are all familiar with the noise that walking through fallen leaves makes, a rustling that sounds almost like water, well it was that noise but there was no one else around. The dogs discovered the culprits before I did but then Squirrels, for some unknown reason, are the dogs’ arch-enemy! There was more than one too and that didn’t go down well with Sika whose eyes were fixed on the light grey bundles, begging to be let off her lead. So for a while we watched as the Squirrels appeared in the shafts of sunlight only to disappear a moment later, but the noise was still there and it still sounded like footsteps.