Making Friends With Nature

The theme of Debra’s Newsletter this month is Friendship and whilst reading it I was reminded of Samuel Taylor Coleridge’s line from his poem ‘Youth and Age’ that, “Friendship is a sheltering tree.” That makes me feel a warm glow growing inside of me, the same glow I feel when I am amongst my true friends.

The other friendship that gives me that feeling of warmth is my connection with Nature, a simple connection that helps to keep my feet on the ground and my head out of the clouds. It helps to remind me that I am a cog in the machinery life and of the whole grand scheme of things, so I need to be in sync with Nature to enable me to do my share of the work in taking care of the World I live in not just for myself but for everyone else and of course for future generations to love and enjoy too.

Whilst out walking the other day I watched a young family enjoying the countryside; taking for free what Mother Nature had provided for them, foraging for blackberries, elder berries, wild garlic and hazel nuts. The kids were having so much enjoyment and were amazed and thrilled at what their parents were showing them. I wished them all to “have a lovely day,” to which the young girl replied “Oh we will, isn’t Nature wonderful!” A tear came to my eye as I walked away thinking to myself that if more parents did things like that with their kids I could rest assured that our World was in safe hands.

That little girl had found a friendship, a friendship that will live in her heart forever. I can’t think of a better way of introducing kids to Nature than by taking them out into it, whether it be the back garden, a local park, the woods or even the seashore and letting them see it, feel it, hear it and taste it (under supervision of course) for themselves. Give them the freedom and opportunity to make a lifelong friendship with Nature; you could just be saving the World!

Steve Tallamy @ Living in Courage Online