The place we inhabit shapes the way we interface with the natural world. We were reminded of this in our recent journey to the Midwest to a place I love dearly to visit family .
We don’t do these things at home:
wade through creeks (too cold here!)
hunt for fossils (limestone creek beds are good for that!)
And there are things we do most anywhere:
find critters under rocks
collect wild things (always to be returned to the wild)
hunt for tracks
There is a universal connection to all natural spaces, ways in which we interface with the wild regardless of place, and there is, simultaneously, some unique experience that each place has to offer. We are comforted by familiarity and we build memories from what sets things apart.
As we return to our Ponderosa forest, I am inspired to see our place with new eyes. Where we were, some form of umbillifer (parsley/carrot family, perhaps Queen Ann’s lace?) lined the streets and paths of our Midwest home-away-from-home. I can’t imagine anyone gives these umbrella flowers much attention. To new eyes, they are a miracle. There is a magical contrast in their ubiquitousness and their delicateness. I will venture out this week with new eyes, looking for the Queen Ann’s Lace of our forest. What ordinary miracle can you find in your place?