NaBloPoMo: The Outdoors [ties]

Nature is where I belong.  I belong to nature.  I am a part of nature.  Nature is a part of me.  The world exists around me, and I exist inside the world.  I did not create the world, and the world did not create me.  I inhabit the earth, and the earth inhabits me.

Cities have their place in our world--I'm living in one of the biggest ones on earth right now, with the most wealth and the most poverty and the most opportunity and the most disappointment--truly a place of extremes.  And that's just it.  Cities are great ways for people to come together and enhance their social, economic, and intellectual lives.  We move to cities to find wealth, love, and answers.

In that way, being outdoors is almost the exact opposite to being in a city (despite the existence of large parks and the prevalence of public transportation).  I feel connected to cities, but I feel born of the earth, akin to nature, and at home without need for shelter or internet or phones.

Sometimes, I like to take long hikes.  Other times, I enjoy just sitting in the woods, no matter what time of year.  And I can almost always make a case for building a fort out of dead limbs and pine boughs, sitting inside and reading for hours at a time.  In my travels, I've seen forests and deserts and mountains and oceans and rain forests and high plains and subtropical rivers and so many more ecosystems than I can count.  I think even seeing the million varieties of a single species of tree could excite me in the same way.  What matters isn't how, why, or how much, but just that there IS nature left in the world.

My world is the world of the outdoors.  They are one and the same, and yet separate.  I can live in the city and have my mind be perpetually in the clouds, the forest, or the cloud forest.  In my head I am frequently walking through the underbrush, rafting down a raging river, or wheezing at the top of an Andean summit.  I doubt I will ever tire of these experiences, and I hope against all hope that I will have the ability to go to these places and walk these ancient paths until the day I die.


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A blog about social change, written from Brooklyn, New York. Currently looking for contributors.