“Barnsley, We came to this area originally to get away from Washington DC. We wanted to come to quiet Cary and enjoy the forests and the beautiful scenic roads. In five years we have seen every piece of land in a two mile radius become de-nuded of trees and we have seen multiple Harris Teeters, Walgreens, Lowes, etc. etc. put on every single corner of every single intersection.
It’s not that I don’t want growth. I am thrilled to be living in the fastest growing area of the United States and I love it when new people come here. But how do I reconcile the feeling of being in such an international happening place and the feeling that this is no longer the place we recognized when we came down here to retire?” Virginia in Cary, NC
Answer: Ah, Virginia, how things change over time! And how we change! Will you feel completely out of place? Really, what makes a place powerful for you?
I’d like to suggest that you ask yourself that question. I’ll bet you will find it is the natural beauty as well as the communities of people, in which you live, work, socialize, and thrive.
Your question points to a poignant yearning of all of us to be more in touch with the earth, to take care of our planet, and to get out in nature and feel the wonder of creation! It also points to the fact that we really MUST experience nature in order to relax, be productive, and be focused in our hurried lives.
What can you do to get energy by “greening” up your life? All the things I’d bet you’re already doing–recycling, being politically active regarding issues of energy, development, and so on. But one thing that I think all of us need to do on a regular basis is to GET OUT IN NATURE!
We have been deracinated by “civilized” life, and pure and simple,we NEED GREEN! We need to be out in the trees and flowers and creeks and oceans and mountains and valleys, really ANYWHERE we find a spot of nature, a power place that can replenish and relax us.
It’s no coincidence that big cities, especially those with few trees, parks, and GREEN places, have the highest crime rate.
We are meant to be in nature. We’re a part of nature. So, Virginia, I urge you to honor this desire in yourself to BE in the forest and the other power places you love and to let your spirit be free! Even with all the development around, you can find such havens though you may have to look harder for them.
Sometimes I just sit out on our back deck at night and muse, much like I did on a dock in Morehead City when I was fifteen. Oftentimes I just watch the fireflies work their hypnotic magic and listen to the crickets play their syncopated sonata.
Time in nature creates peace and power within that we can later translate into concrete ACTION and RESULTS. And I believe time in nature is ESSENTIAL to our creativity, our well-being, and our ability to perform at peak levels in ALL areas of our lives.
So Virginia, get out there and let Mother Nature replenish you. Make Walt Whitman proud.
I’ll see you at Umstead Park. If I’m streaking, well, just look the other way, okay? 🙂 I’ve been reading too much Whitman….