There has been recent talk on the net about beheading Puxatony Phil, for his sloppy work in forecasting the end of winter this year. However I believe that the pesky rodent has earned a slight reprieve. I drove up to my mother's house downeast Maine last Tuesday night to visit with her for a time. I arrived in the evening after dark and managed a twenty minute Vernal Equinox hike of the moon-the-moon variety out in a brisk 25 degrees just before midnight, barely beating my own challenge put forth to some of my friends. A worthy nude night hike for its beauty and solitude which I will try to post later.
Last Wednesday was stunning for the first full day of spring up this way. A fresh 10-12 inches of snow had fallen the previous day re-coating the intermittently bare ground, thus this morning I was greeted with the task of clearing snow from around my mother's property. Her driveway had been plowed late on Tuesday by a contractor, so the biggest task was taken care of, but there were several other areas to be tended to by hand, most important for me was the clearing of the southeast facing sun deck that graces the front of the house. Fortunately I had not had to bother with clothes since departing my own house near Boston, so I was in no mood to find any this morning. One can imagine my pleasure as I stepped out into her cold garage from the kitchen around 9:30am, crossed over behind the cars, and tossed up the overhead door to a warm spring sun smiling down upon my naked body from a brilliant blue sky, and all of that gleaming white stuff on the ground reflecting back some of that precious heat. If there is to be any fun found in shoveling snow, then today must be what snow shoveling is all about. I eagerly grabbed the shovel from the hook on the wall, padded out into the snow wearing only my VFF toe shoes, and set to work. Tossing shovel full after shovel full of this heavy wet stuff had me working up a sweat from the beginning. At about 36 degrees (F), with that powerful sun overhead, it all felt so right to me at that moment. One of those moments of unencumbered euphoria that can't be planned. Nudity and most any kind of work really do go together well. As I worked my way across the deck, the just cleared planking behind me immediately dried. By the time I reached the far end, the deck was ready for what I had rebuilt this deck for a few years ago….nude sunbathing! A quick trip to the garage to retrieve a few resin chairs and a table from winter storage, and the deck was ready for another season of outdoor nudity.
After taking care of a few other brief tasks, and walking down the drive to the mailbox to collect the waiting sale fliers and other junk from the likes of Walmart and Target, I prepared my breakfast and retired with it, to the waiting deck. A small grouping of pine trees at the foot of the drive across the lane from the mailbox, which are actually on the neighbor's property, has filled in nicely over the past couple of years, so that the neighbor folks can no longer clearly look upon our driveway, deck, nor much of any of the rest of my mother's front yard from their own recently built sunroom addition, so everyone is happy, and I can be reasonably relaxed about my nudity while out and about there. I stretched out upon a beach towel spread out over the planks and proceeded to get lost in the moment for the next two and one half hours. A respite, broken only once when some good friends from up the road, motored down on their quads. I wrapped on a towel, the only thing I had at hand, as they pulled up in the driveway and dismounted, and I was able to greet them textile (sort-of). We chatted about the weather, what else? Another humorous study in contrasts, as they were bundled up as if it was still January. I run into this occasionally in my naked rambles during the winter up here in Maine. I guess that I am just out of step. But they know me well enough that they kept their concerns about my sanity to themselves. A very distinctly Maine like point of etiquette.
It is very quiet out on the point, so with no breeze, the only sound that I remained aware of was a red squirrel that perched on the railing over my head and incessantly chitted an alarm to all who would listen about this naked human sprawled out where there had been a blanket of new snow only a hour earlier. The chickadees that constantly flitted back and forth between the shrubs and the feeder over my shoulder on the other side, paid no heed to the warning, completely ignoring my presence. I don't usually enjoy sunbathing rotisserie style, but this morning was so compelling that I just stayed with it adjusting my position every twenty minutes, till around 12:30pm when the breeze started to pick up. Even then, not yet cold, the first notion that I had of the breeze was the gentle rising woosh through the tree tops of the adjoining forest that abuts the other three sides of the yard. This called to my attention the thought that I really should get out and explore a bit before some advancing clouds put an end to my little re-acquaintance session with the sun. So I hauled up and marched off around the side of the house, crossed the back yard and sauntered off into the waiting woods without a net. Yet another tale to be told of another hour, spent naked in a snow draped northern spruce forest without encountering any other human tracks nor any socially mandated need for clothing. Suffice it to say, I received my vitamin D fix for today, and then some.
I'd have to say after this morning, that there is some promise waiting for us within this spring, if only in a warm sun so far. Hang in there you all. -Dan
Postscript as of this morning:
Well these early spring days are falling into a pattern with clear blue skies with brilliant sun for a few hours each morning followed by advancing clouds through the afternoon. The UV is more intense up here, even this early, than back home around Boston because of the lower pollution levels. After spending the past few mornings on the deck sprawled out upon a towel, I believe that I am getting a good early start on some "no textile lines" color since beginning this daily routine following the Equinox when I first shoveled the snow off the deck the other day. The temperature even nudged 40 degrees (F) this morning for the first time in at least two weeks. And my daily forays without a net up into the woods are now coming with easier footing, as the sun has been making quick work of the snow that greeted my naked presence at the garage door last Wednesday morning. In the snow's place, mud. If the temperature would only creep a bit higher, I may actually be convinced that mud season has finally arrived! I never dreamed that I might actually look forward to the arrival of one of northern New England's notorious extra seasons. One huge bonus of my early nude season this year, is NO BUGS yet! I'll take it.
It is a great pleasure to be clothes free virtually 24/7 except for the occasional trip into town, or walk across the neighbor's meadow (where I am in sight of their kitchen window), down to the river, since my arrival here in Maine last week. My advice to you naked cabin fever victims: Ignore the lingering snow and stubborn cold and grab ahold of that warm spring sunshine when you can get it. Guaranteed to lift your spirits.
Greetings from Maine. Play naked. -freewalkerma 2013-