Having spent the last week working on kitchen renovations I decided during my morning meditation that it was time to get outside. Outside in Miami in July is a much different experience than outside in the Adirondacks in July. It was a strong pull however and I’m really glad I went. I drove west to the Everglades and walked a couple of miles in Shark Valley. When I first went to the Everglades many years ago I remember feeling a sense of underwhelm. What was the big deal with this river of grass… No mountains, no heart pumping uphill climbs, no tall trees or cliffs.
Now when I go to the Everglades I get it. Yes, it’s hot. Yes, there are mosquitoes and biting flies and other crazy insects buzzing around. However, there’s a subtle beauty to it and if I slow down enough I really enjoy it. Today there were a surprising number of people on the trail (mostly tourists from Germany, I really must ask my friend Rainer what the attraction is). There were also a number of animal sightings; anhingas, bass, pond apple snails, lubber grasshoppers, one lone and battered Monarch butterfly, a huge number of Peacock butterflies, a large turtle on the bank and a medium sized gator. The soundscape was filled with the croaking of pig frogs, splashing alligator gar, birdsong, and thunder.
I always feel so much better when I return from being in nature. I’m continuing to read Martha Beck and one of her suggestions in the Joy Diet is to feast. Today I feasted on solitude in nature.
What is calling to you right now? What will you feast on?