Unrequited love. What is it? I’ll tell you what it’s not, it’s not the state of mind one should be in when embarking on an outing into the wet, damp confines of the New Zealand bush. The quiet absence of life, and the eeriness of the New Zealand bush is sad, introspective, and lonely enough, without bringing to it a human emptiness as well.
But it was quite apt, that I found myself traversing the 84km of the Timber Trail in this frame of mind. I found a kindred spirit in the forest as there is a sadness that follows this trail. It cuts through a landscape that was raped of its trees not so long ago. It’s hilly defence held out only until all the other trees were gone, then it had no choice but to finally give itself up to mans insatiable greed and his noisy machines. As I cycled through, I could see its wounds are healing, but the relics of its loss are still clearly visible, steel reminders tossed aside to rust, just like the landscape was tossed aside, left to fend for itself once it’s pillagers had taken what they wanted and left for their next free meal.
The forest is now reclaiming its past glory, and slowly learning to stand again. It will one day, perhaps 100 years from now, again stand at its true height with its hands held high in the air. However, for the birds lost, their day of resurrection may never arrive.
The Pureora bush is beautiful, and during my ride I was so blessed to have heard two kaka screeching their hearts out, and this gave me hope. Hope for the best. Unrequited love after all, is loving and hoping for the best, regardless of the outcome. It is a beautiful thing.