Our deer paths lead from wild apple tree to wild apple tree in the woods. Following deer paths in the autumn is the best way to find apple trees ready for picking. We have over a hundred in various stages of growth and over 9 varieties of apples.
The deer still hope an errant apple or two will drop, but they have mostly dropped and been eaten now. But still, the deer follow the old paths.
The best writing for me was MacFarlane's description of his ritual walk across the Cairngorm massif in Scotland, south to north, to attend the funeral of his grandfather, a mountaineer. I will be reading his earlier book, Mountains of the Mind, in which his grandfather is featured. He follows the Icknield Way and other paths of England in the footsteps of Edward Thomas,a writer and poet, who was killed during World War I in France. As an American, I was not familiar with Thomas' writings, but found MacFarlane's delving into his life and jaunts interesting, and that he was a friend of Robert Frost, who inspired him to become a poet. This book is full of little surprises. A joyful read.