Saturday, August 29, 2009

Back to civilization... of a sort

I returned yesterday from my week in the Adirondacks in upstate New York, and I am surprised to say I actually really enjoyed it. I went as part of a class I am taking at university about wildlife management, so we conducted vegetation surveys, learned to shoot a dart gun, watched a black bear get radio-tagged, and learned about deer, marten, beavers, flying squirrels, salamanders, and all sorts of other crawly, furry, flying creatures.

I like nature, and I like the outdoors, but I was fully prepared to detest spending a week at some field station in the middle of the bush. On the contrary, I came to value the quiet stillness, the millions and millions of twinkling stars that you can't see from the city, the black nights with crickets chirping you to sleep, the loons calling on the lake, the smell of bonfire and being with friends, waking up at dawn with the fog hanging over the trees... I got back Friday night feeling a little jarred by the cars and the noise and the people and the buildings. Even five days in the forest can change you.

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