18th February 2018

Today I tried out the first sit~spot. I have been thinking about starting this practise for a while, having seen many references to it in various books and magazines recently. I have a few ideas about where I think a good place is going to be but I want to try out a few places before I make my mind up, as I know that each one has pros and cons. The first place is only five minutes walk away from the house, which means that I am much more likely to go there. It is to the left over the bridge, so that means that it is in the ‘scarier’ section of the woods but it is at the edge of the forest looking out onto an open patch of land, so I should have a good view of anything that may approach me. I know that up on the ridge is a regular boar run but tbqh, most of the forest is overrun with wild boar, so I think that there’s no getting away from the fact that wherever I sit, I will at some point have to get over my fear of them (and my fear of the dark).

I sat in this sit~spot for 45 minutes (6pm to 6.45pm) just until the darkness was too much to bear. I saw absolutely nothing. I heard intermittent squeaks from shrews in the undergrowth to my right. There were still a few children out on the sledging run shouting in the distance, so maybe that was a reason for the quiet.

It is funny, but I was not expecting nothing to happen. I had visions of sitting down and within half an hour or so seeing a fox dart across the back ridge or at least a blackbird come and sit atop one of the pines and start singing. I saw absolutely nothing. My fear meant that I was looking this way and that for most of the 45 minutes as the dark descended, because I felt that I needed to know what was going on around me at all times; I had a strange state of readiness to run if something approached me. I was very cold and really quite bored with the whole thing, although the crescent moon was setting down into the west and the scene was just picture perfect.

Who knows whether this will be the sit~spot I choose in the end? It is the first of a few I want to try out, all in very different positions. I have no past record of seeing any wildlife here and this one will be a scary option for me but maybe that is a good thing as it means I have to tackle that fear head on.