Some people treasure things. Jewellery, family photographs, collections etc.
Whilst they can all give people an enormous amount of pleasure, the main problem is things can be taken away. Thefts, floods, house fires or worse can all result in losing those things people find most precious.
Me? I tend to treasure memories. Perhaps it is because I have got to the stage of life when I realise I don’t need that much when it comes to stuff. Maybe it is because I know that memories are my memories. They are unique to me and nothing and nobody can take them from me.
Looking back over my life (that makes me sound really old, I’m not!) one particularly memory stands out because I know I will never be able to repeat it.
I had been working permanent night shifts for about six months and it was on one of my ‘days‘ off. It was a really warm time of year and I simply could not get to sleep to get back into day mode. So I went for a drive.
I didn’t have a plan when I set out, I would see where the car took me. I think all the best adventures start as unplanned journeys.
Before too long, I ended up in the Lake District which, bearing in mind it was around 2:30am was surprisingly busy, not with people but with wildlife. I drove around the area for a while, taking in what little I could see on roads I had never driven on before.
When I noticed that dawn was about to break, I pulled over by the side of a lake and decided to watch the sun rise, just sitting quietly by myself. I had been sitting for a few minutes when I heard a quiet cough behind me. Thinking I was about to see someone else out at an odd time in the morning, I turned around and came face to face with a badger.
Now these little chaps can be quite aggressive when cornered, so to say I was little scared would be an understatement. I was sitting on the ground dangling my legs over the bank of the lake, so my face was well within striking distance for him.
I looked at him.
He looked at me.
He came right up to me and nudged my right arm, clearly checking me out and seeing what I was doing there.
Slowly I reached around to my left to try and get my camera which went with me everywhere at the time, but as I lifted it from the bag, he was off. Scurrying away back in the direction I assume he came from.
I will never experience such an encounter again, but just for one moment, one precious special moment, I think me and the badger made a connection. An agreement if you like. I wouldn’t hurt him, if he didn’t hurt me.
That’s what I call treasure.