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Nature in it's glory

Nature in it's glory

About me: The road to now

When I was a child , even as young as four, I drove my grandmother and parents quite crazy I think. To say I was very curious is an understatement.  Why and how did snails carry their house, where did they live?  Where was the Cuckoo's nest and why was the sky  blue?  I would be dressed up nice and neat, and given a good breakfast by my grandmother, and not five minutes later I would be exploring the hedges in her yard with a friend; all my grandmother's efforts to keep me neat and clean quite undone.  Needless to say, often my pretty  dresses were simply ruined, not that I liked dresses much, but Omie, my grandma did, and she would be quite exasperated.  It is truly a wonder that she never lost patience.

Later when my parents moved to a smaller community not far from Omie's home town in Germany, I would often disappear dragging my sisters with me.  We would sometimes be gone for hours, exploring the local canals, neighborhood farm yards, orchards and gardens.  We would  catch tadpoles, find bats under bridges and chase butterflies, all so I could learn and discover all things new to me in nature.  There was no wildlife safe from my eagerness to learn.  In those days children were relatively safe, at least from human predators, but my parents must have worried nevertheless.

My  fondest memories involved my dad taking us out to nearby peat bogs and teaching us about trees, flowers, mushrooms, and wildlife while we picked Lily of the Valley to bring home to my mom.  Another of a fawn recovering  in the neighbor's yard.  It had been caught by a farmyard thresher and lost a leg.  Despite it's injury it was gentle, where another animal might have attacked when we approached to pet it. I never forgot that.  Then there was the Red Tailed Kite that hunted the neighborhood and a class discussion of it's near extinction when I noticed  it fly by one day, that also sticks out in memory.  That class discussion had a real impact on me and I loved  watching that Red Tailed Kite fly, it's bright pinkish red tail flashing in sunlight.

These are all memories I had forgotten until years later, in another country; my new home, when another type of Hawk altogether got my  attention.  Life had changed and somehow gotten  in  the way of what truly mattered to me, a capacity and need to learn through and from nature.

More about the road to now is related in the article Northern Harrier posted on Feb 12,  2010 and Goshawk posted on February 14,  2010