Sunday, September 30, 2012

Imagination and a Visit to River Bend

Crunch!  Swoosh!
Crunch!  Swoosh!

Walking silently was not an option.  Dried leaves covered the trails of River Bend Nature Center, and our energy was running high.  We had finally made it back to the park.

Much of the green was replaced with orange and yellow, while bits of red poked through, vying for attention.

red virginia creeper vying for attention

Breezes alternately whistled or rushed through the tree limbs, making my daughter and I smile in wonder, imagining fairies, trolls, and even dragons hiding within the treeline.  And who could blame us?  The falling of the leaves revealed so many hiding places, if you have the imagination to see them.

Could a tiny civilization make their home within this hollowed out, fallen tree trunk?  We can't see through to the end, after all...

hollowed out log

And what lies beneath these still and murky depths?  As we look down, we can't help but wonder if we're standing at the center of a troll bridge...

murky still waters

It was so much fun!

Normally I talk about the farmers market on Sundays, but I didn't make it  this week... again. We spent a few hours at River Bend on Friday, exploring the trails, and used more of our energy than we realized.  Indeed, neither one of us was awake before 9:30 am, and that's quite a feat for us!

Going to River Bend not only allowed us to set our imaginations free, but also gave us the opportunity to get away from the trappings of modern life.  Rather than television or games, our imagination and activity levels were our entertainment.

Furthermore, getting out into nature brings a certain clarity of mind.  

Daily stresses wash away, because, well... think about it!  They aren't needed.  That mistake you made at work?  That person that judges your every action?  The bills that need to be paid?

None of those things have any place here, and there's nothing to remind you of them.  Nature doesn't judge.  The trees have no use for your money.  If your boots stumble off-trail and onto a young sapling, it'll still grow.

Nature is peaceful, and holds no grudges.

Your only responsibility as you wander the trails is to have respect for the life around you.  Just as the green (or in this case, the orange and yellow) plants clean the air around you and grant you this peace, you can, in turn, remove any human waste you find littering the trails, helping the plants do their jobs more efficiently.

autumn trail

Get out there and enjoy yourself!  

Sure, you may not live anywhere near River Bend, but there are so many other places to visit.  Who knows what your own imagination will conjure up?  Only you, and only if you take the time to allow it to happen.  Take some time to get away from the stresses of daily life, and enjoy the world around you.

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