Noticing, Nature, and Friends 03/13/2011
What do you do when it hits you how oblivious you are?
Had it really taken me seven years to notice the pond across the way from my school? In my defense, it was behind a row of houses and trees. Maybe, even obscured by them.
Last year, my friend and I began to take walks after lunch around the pond. In the beginning, I complimented myself for doing something healthy and, as a bonus, getting in touch with nature.
Alas. As I walked along the rambling pathway, I saw trees and the sky and, of course, the pond. My friend, however, pointed out red berries on a brambly bush. She spied a snapping turtle dipping under water. I called her Miss Nature.
In subsequent journeys, my friend identified sundry birds by their names and colors as they glided and hovered over us. Upon seeing a goose, she recognized immediately that it was injured. I missed these fleeting moments.
I vowed to do better. Taking inventory, I decided I was too much inside my own head. I owe my friend for the gift she showed me: paying attention and noticing the world. Now, as we walk, I try to zoom in on the details. I watch and learn from her. And, I need to give her my thanks.
A teacher and reader who wants to practice writing--despite being a procrastinator and one of the slowest writers in the world.