Monday, November 12, 2007

In Nature

When I lived in the suburbs, I took my dogs for walks. I was aware of the weather, of course, and the changing seasons. I was aware when the dogs tugged on me to go after a squirrel or rabbit. I often went on walks there in a park. I did it to get exercise, but to also help heighten my awareness of my surroundings, which helps me, as a writer, focus.
I thought I had heightened my sensese there, but nothing beats doing that when you live in the country.
I take the dogs on 2 walks a day, at least a mile each.
When I went out in the city with or without the dogs - as any woman should be, I tried to be aware of who was near me, for humans pose the most danger to others there.
At night or early in the morning in the country, we do not leave the house without a gun, not for fear of muggers, but for wild animals. It isn't unusual to go to sleep at night by the hoot of an owl or the call of the whippoorwill, but it isn't unusual either to be awakened in the early morning hours by the baying of coyotes or the growl of a bob cat on a chase for food through our front yard.
In the city, on our daily walks, the biggest fear I had was tripping over one of the many uneven patches or cracks in the sidewalk. Now if I don't look where I'm going, I might happen upon a poisonous copperhead, trip over a large turtle or even squash a tarantula or toad in the middle of the road. And God forbid we come upon a skunk.
And here in the boonies, where we have to wait 5 minutes to get a satellite feed for our local weather, we usually measure it now by stepping outside. How many times, as city dwellers, do we say, "Oh, it was raining this morning, but turned nice this afternoon." We knew it was nice because we looked out of our windows and saw the sun come out. But rarley do we actually go out and experience it.
Living in the country has forced me out into the world. I might be 12 miles from civilization, but I'm more keenly aware of the world in which we live.


Blogger Kathy@TheFlawlessWord said...

I've lived in the country my entire life and it's never even crossed my mind to take a gun with me...and I take long walks with my dogs through the woods too. (Am I stupid or what? LOL) Mountain lions and bears have (purportedly) been spotted in my area and I hear coyotes howl many nights. I've yet to encounter any of these creatures, however. I guess it's just a risk I don't really even think about.

8:57 AM CST  

Post a Comment

<< Home