Saturday, June 10, 2017

On nature

I was reminded again today, via a story on NPR about the health benefits of being in nature, about how much I live outdoors.  I have a large dog, who doesn't believe in using his own yard for a toilet, so that necessitates a minimum of three walks per day.  Frequently he gets four walks, and he gets lectured about how spoiled he is when he gets five walks in a day. The walks are a minimum of thirty minutes, and at least one walk per day is an hour, and sometimes an hour and a half.  

We are very fortunate to live on an island outside a major city where two state parks are located, and a few local parks.  We also live on the back side of a golf course, so there are a number of places we can go to walk or hike.  Just last week I began jogging again.  We'll see how long that lasts.

My friends on FB say they look forward to my daily posts because I post pictures of where I am, and the beautiful things I witness in nature.  Even now, I am sitting outside with my iPad while writing this, and I can hear the wind, the birds, and the deep hum of my baritone windchimes.  The sun is dappling down on me through the branches of the trees.  The scents in the air range from fresh cut grass to wet soil, to scents of flowers on nearby trees.  Oops, there's the scent of creosote, yuck!  Someone must be getting their driveway coated.

My dog is my excuse to get outside, but really, he makes it possible for me to safely wander and explore any place I want.  I've explored well-worn trails.  I've blazed new trails.  I've gotten to see things in various shades of light depending on the time of day and weather, and in various seasons, that  I've now come to realize too many people will never get to experience.  They either don't have, or don't make the time to get outside, or they're unable to climb and hike to all the quiet spots I find.  

I don't know how long this phase of my life will last where I have the time, the means to travel, and the physical ability to still hike and climb around like a kid with her dog, but I am going to use every moment I have to get out in nature, because it makes me happy.  It makes me feel connected to the world around me, and I know from tromping around with others, that it is keeping me fit and healthy.  I am very lucky.


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