The Curious Case of the Overturned Tree

Standing in the depths of the forest that blocked out the little light the waning moon provided, I saw a red light slowly bobbing in my direction.

I had been there for twenty minutes already, hoping to see the glowworms at the overturned tree, as a Swedish person recommended in the visitor’s log.

So far, no glowworms had appeared. As such, I spent my time pacing back and forth, bending and twisting every which direction, hoping to see some tiny speck of blue light. Was I even at the right tree?

The red light approached closer. I called out, but received no response. The forest was especially quiet at night. The only sounds were the occasionally rustling of some creature in the bushes, or a distant bird calling out.

I was shivering, not bringing enough clothes for the night and thinking fondly of just a few hours before, where I was soaking in hot springs chatting to some Maori women about tourism and the effects of tourism on a local community.

The light finally approached. A couple from Montana was the source, on a Kiwi-spotting adventure (the animal, not the people). So far they had been unsuccessful, perhaps in part because of my squawking. I apologized as they passed by and resumed my own hunt.

Two or three glowworms finally appeared. More followed suit, and soon the overturned trunk’s curves were outlined by luminescent blue spots.

After a few minutes of observation, my instincts for self-preservation outweighed my curiousity. I fumbled back in the dark, barely able to see the path before me.