The first time I spotted one I thought it was an albino. I was completely surprised, fascinated and bewitched.
I was taking a walk into the deep of a wild and intriguing forest, even if just few miles outside Malmö: the silence, interrupted only by the chirping of the birds which, after the long Scandinavian winter, came back to settle again in this part of the country; the air around smelled good, of resin and moss; my being alone, in the benevolent embrace of birches, larches and firs, rose to an important moment. I stopped to fully enjoy that peaceful moment. Then, the sound of a broken branch made my heart leap in my throat: I turned abruptly and, like a ghost, I saw that white fallow deer, spirit of the forest, stand out from the dark of the green and brown landscape. We were both silent, surprised, looking at each other for moments that moved away from the normal flow of time. Finally, as he had appeared, he quickly disappeared into the deep of the woods.
Actually it was not an albino specimen, but a particular subspecies, imported in the 18th century by the owner of the Castle of Öved (Övedskloster), on the banks of Lake Vomb (Vombsjön). When the castle fell into disgrace, the population of white fallow deer mixed with the one already present and, since then, they spread rapidly throughout the territory.
It is therefore not difficult to sight these specimens, also because their color makes them, in fact, easily recognizable, and since then there have been other sightings. In particular, I was lucky enough to discover the area where a wholly pack of 13 white specimens lives, which I decided to call “the pack of Angels”, another flock with a single specimen, a male one with a single horn, of the normal brown species and, at the opposite, an herd of all brown females and a white male, with a single horn too.
As always, however, every meeting remains and will always be a great emotion, a magic spell. An important gift, a gift to be discarded with care.
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