In every walk with nature one receives far more than he seeks. – John Muir
Be with nature not in nature, for starters. (see my post over at Our Search For Paradise on what I mean by that.) If you open your eyes, ears, senses, mind, and spirit, there is little more rewarding than a walk with nature!
I am just now able to walk for more than a few minutes at a time since having foot surgery. How I have missed being able to be with nature! I’m still limited to less than half a mile at a time before my foot starts to scream at me, but compared to being bound to the house or car, it is tremendous!
Recently we took a drive and I decided to swing by a lake that was drained about3 years ago, Shreve Lake. Now it is a small and shallow pond surrounded by marsh and tall grass prairie. Young cottonwoods wreath the lake creating a willowy wall halfway between the former and current shores.
I enjoy listening to nature. The breezes rustle the leaves and whistle through the grasses, joe-pye weed, boneset, and goldenrod. Crickets and cicadas chitter their rhythmic songs while bees buzz and dragonflies whir by. Birds sing and call to one another. One might call this the peace and quiet of the countr. It is anything but quiet; yet peaceful it is.
I enjoy watching the insects also, especially pollinators, such as bees and butterflies. A tiny lavender colored skipper flittered about here and there, as well as Monarch and Viceroy butterflies. There were many goldenrod soldier beetles on the flowers this day. They are a beneficial insect as they eat other pests as well as pollen and nectar of flowers. These insects were new to us, but we were quick to learn about them and appreciate what they do!
When we returned to the car, I turned back to the lake and saw a blue heron fishing where the creek flows into the pond. I took a few pictures from a great distance, however, when I turned around to leave, it took flight and swooped by right in front of us. Unfortunately, I was not fast enough with the camera, but I was fortunate to see it soar by, its impressive wingspan of slate blue a streak as it disappeared behind the trees.
I enjoy being with nature and always find something new to stir curiosity or emotion. I’ve only ever taken short nature walks, I can only imagine the deep feelings hikers must develop while being with nature for days at a time. When I am with nature, I seek leisure, what I find, is wonder.
What do you find you receive when you walk with nature? What do you seek?
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