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At the lower levels in the heart of the forest, water gathered in dark pools surrounded by strange mounds of bright green moss. The soft mounds were comfortable to sit upon, but disconcertingly odd, and when Algy looked out of the corner of his eye, he had the feeling that unnatural lights were flickering on and off in the depths of the black water. It was almost Halloween, and he wondered whether he was really wise to spend the night in the forest…

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As the sun sank lower through the tangled branches, Algy woke from his afternoon nap. The mosses on the forest floor were beautifully soft but they were also exceedingly damp, so Algy hopped up onto a low twiggy branch to dry his tail feathers, and gazed deep into the heart of the forest.

Over the years, the winter gales had felled many trees, which continued to lie in the spot they had fallen. This made the forest even more impenetrable, but it also provided new life, and new homes for many tiny creatures. Algy was fascinated by this strange environment, so unlike his own airy home by the ocean, and he wondered what it would be like to live in such a place…

Algy hopes that no matter what kind of environment you are inhabiting this weekend, you will have a peaceful and happy time 🙂

There was an incredible tangle of bare branches at the lower levels in the forest, and it was quite impossible to fly through them. Even birds much smaller than Algy had to hop from twig to twig if they wanted to make their way through the dense trees. But it was calm and peaceful, and when the sun managed to filter through to the forest floor is was positively pleasant. Algy relaxed on his deep cushion of moss, dozing on and off…

It was time to leave the beautiful woodlands by the river, so Algy began to make his way home, but the days were much shorter now, and he could not manage to fly all the way before night fell. He decided to rest for a while in the forest which clothed the steep hillside near the deep, dark loch. It was dark in the forest too, even during the day, as the tall trees blocked out much of the light, but Algy was not afraid. He knew that there could be no darkness without light, and sure enough, here and there, patches of bright sunlight filtered through the crowded branches to the forest floor. Settling himself down on a bed of soft moss, Algy drowsily watched the changing patchwork of light through the trees until he fell asleep…

Algy dropped down to the woodland floor and leaned back on a soft carpet of mosses and fallen beech leaves. It was peaceful in the woods and everything seemed hushed; apart from the quiet rippling of the river, and the occasional whisper of a falling leaf, there was almost no sound. As he contemplated the trees in their autumn glory, Algy was reminded of a famous verse by Lord Byron:

There is a pleasure in the pathless woods,
There is a rapture on the lonely shore,
There is society, where none intrudes,
By the deep sea, and music in its roar:
I love not man the less, but Nature more,
From these our interviews, in which I steal
From all I may be, or have been before,
To mingle with the Universe, and feel
What I can ne’er express, yet cannot all conceal. 

[Algy is quoting a small part of the long narrative poem Childe Harold’s Pilgrimage by the early 19th century Anglo-Scottish poet Lord Byron.]

Algy flew into the beech woods which lined one side of the river bank, and found a rather less comfortable perch than the one he had just left…

Although he loved his wild and windy home by the ocean shore, and the constant, soothing sounds of the sea, he had to admit that it made a pleasant change to be sheltered by these stately trees, and to be able to observe the autumn colours in the peaceful woodland without being blown around…

Algy hopes that you will all enjoy a peaceful weekend in a pleasant spot 🙂