The Three Day Quote Challenge continues! I couldn’t NOT include a quote by naturalist and conservationist John Muir.
When I lived and worked in Houston, I would pack my lunch and go outside when it wasn’t too hot. Right next to our building was a large grassy area with park benches and a fountain.
Sometimes in the elevator a co-worker would ask me what I was doing. Many times I heard, “Wow, I’ve never done that.” Here was a lovely strip of nature right outside the office, and people frequently ignored it.
After many hiking vacations, we could no longer live indoors with air conditioning. The pull of fresh air and the woods grew too great, and we moved to western Washington where we could be outdoors as often as we want.
Doctors and mental health researchers, more and more, are looking at the physical and mental benefits of time in nature, and there are numerous articles such as this one online. Nature Deficit Disorder is a popular phrase these days after Richard Louv wrote Last Child in the Woods.
I don’t need a study, though, to tell me how much it matters for me to connect with the great outdoors every single day.
Outside, whether I’m in the garden or walking the many wooded trails that wind through our town, I am at peace. Some days I have to drag myself out there, but five minutes later I’m rejuvenated. Throughout my day, between bouts of writing or research, I’m out the door. Here, in a small town, I can connect with sunrises and sunsets, with equinoxes and solstices, with subtle shifts of temperature that tell me of a change in seasons or an early spring.
Maybe if our politicians and lobbyists spent more time outdoors, our national priorities would be different.
Now, if you’ll excuse me, I have berries to pick.
How about you? Do you get to spend time in nature? What’s your favorite outdoor activity?