I went over this subject with good friend, Dr. Bob – Birding a few months ago. But I keep finding these same theme reoccurring over and over. I think it is fanaticism or something. You must BE something completely or nothing at all. NO YOU DON’T.
You can be it all. You can enjoy all of the Natural world without having to be designated any one thing. I love being all the things in the title of this Posting, plus more. I may not be the best Birder around, but I love watching, listening and enjoying the interactions out on the Trails.
I can hardly ID most Mushrooms I come across. Well….maybe a few. Enough so that I do not poison myself. Especially since I like to put everything in my mouth. 🙂 But there is not a Mushroom along the Trails that I spot, that I do not stop to examine.
Enjoying the Outdoors and Nature does not mean that one must be an expert in anything. The shear respect and love for Mother Earth is enough. My most private moments come deep into the forests by a remote Pond. Some of the answers to the questions in my own life have come while Hiking or just sitting along a quite stream.
Today I went and visited my Heron friends at Holland Ponds. Counted occupied nests and mating pairs of Herons. Got some excellent pictures and video. Yet I can hardly have a very deep conversation with some of my regular Birding friends. SO WHAT. They understand. We share what knowledge we both have on what subjects or specifics in Nature we have. And isn’t that good enough.
I guess I am relaying this information because I have come to see that it does not matter if you are a Fanatic or a Pro Birder, Pro Mushroom Hunter, Pro Geocacher. It just matters if it all gives you understanding and joy. And that you share that with others.
As a punk, I was a fanatic at everything I did. fanatic back Packer, fanatic Canoer, fanatic survivalist/Orienteerer. I could pull out ID numbers to equipment and gear and quote survival needs I cannot even remember now. 🙂 I would get lost in the fanaticism, and not as much in the forest as I should have. Maybe those where my test years. My means at acquiring the knowledge base to do what i wanted in the outdoors and not be concerned about my safety and or not knowing what was happening.
These days…..I have become a minimalist. Not always the best way, but less to think about. Water, my Camera and some small survival equipment stashed in my case, and I am all set to BE anything. Or Everything. Or Nothing at all. Just Being in the Outdoors is good enough. Enjoying the times there and absorbing the positive energy that flows in Nature.
Although we can be entertained and enjoy some recreation in our Parks, we should NEVER forget they are delicate places that we need for much more then just recreational purposes. They are our connections to everything. Everything that makes the world exist. Respect these places. Understand these things, and protect what they are for the future.
I left out one very important thing in the title to this posting. I am NATURE Too.