Last year I failed in my attempt to see a rare yellow lady slipper. My pal Georgia Peach was going to take me, but then she lost track of where they were. Then, when she finally rediscovered them, I had taken off to the Black Sea on a Danube River cruise. Alas, by the time I was back stateside, the girls had faded away.
This year I was determined to see one. Georgia Peach promised to take me again, but she went off on a well-deserved beach vacation. So, I went to Stone Heart, intrepid hiking companion and friend. I hiked to Nimblewill Gap on the AT Approach Trail. I met Stone Heart there, and we hiked north on a gloomy, foggy morning. Soon we found a single perfect YLS kissed by a delicate coat of dew, lemony yellow in the sunless morning light. I had that little thrill one feels upon finally sighting that which they have sought for years.
Feeling triumphant and a bit smug, I hiked back to Nimblewill, chatted briefly with Stone Heart and headed southward on the Approach Trail. Later, Stone Heart reported that right after I left he spotted a bear and followed it for a photo. He immediately discovered seven more yellow lady slippers. Darn the luck!
Oh, well. I finally saw one. Next year, I will travel back to see more. During the interval, I will think up some other species of flora or fauna I need to see. Life is more fun when you have things to look for, don’t you think?