The healing power of nature is not a magic bullet. Like anything that heals, you have to actively take or engage in the therapy.
Then there is distraction. Not the good kind, that allows you to escape. The kind that takes you away from the things that are important. The kind that expands and consumes so that even nature struggles to free you. When you get free, 30 Days Wild is gone. Fortunately, nature remains. Every day can have something wild in it. All you have to do is look and/or listen.
I’m telling you a little of how I didn’t manage to post something for every day of 30 Days Wild, but distraction is a much bigger problem. We live in what some would call the information age. But there’s so much information, it’s impossible to use it all – and frankly much of it isn’t much use anyway. At least not the kind that’s known as ‘content’ or that you reach via clickbait. Social media in particular holds us in a vicelike grip. Distraction as a straightjacket. And what if, when we get free, nature is gone? Because while we fixate on the distraction, the physical world carries on apace. Some of that activity is good and it’s a shame we’re missing it. The rest is bad or worse. We don’t see that either – which means there’s nothing to stop it.
I know these are dark musings – but I don’t want to depress you. I’m hoping you’ll see it as a call to action to protect and stand up for nature. Here are some of my highlights of the final week of 30 Days Wild to inspire you.
Enjoying nature is a feast for the senses. One day the treat was the sound of grasshoppers zzz zzz zzz-ing from the long grass at the edge of the golf course. Another morning it was seeing day flying moth, a lovely black and red creature called a six-spot burnet, feeding on a flower with the unfortunate name of scabious. It was briefly joined by a small bumble bee on the same flower head. There is so much going on at your feet if only you take a moment to look.
In the air, house martins chirrupped as they flew past along the edge of the cliff. On Whiteness Isle the herring gulls had several chicks – which pleased me as the gulls in our street seem not to have bred this year.
A herald of the season already beginning to turn, even though it was still June, was black headed gulls swimming at the edge of the water in Kingsgate Bay. I was alerted to their presence by their gentle ‘scree scree’ calls (which are sometimes much louder and harsher than they were today). There were around 30 of them, floating in groups, and occasionally dipping their faces into the sea to feed. It was a very peaceful scene – which took place to a soundtrack of a wren singing from the nearby bushes accompanied by the wind and the waves lapping at the shore.
It’s in moments like those I describe above that nature works her magic on us. Seek them out. You won’t be disappointed.
Although the official 30 Days Wild of June have passed for another year, please keep an eye out for my Nature Diary posts where I’ll continue to write about my wildlife watching and listening.