Friday, July 11, 2014

Gratitude day #9

Part of me has always longed to be a farm girl, live on a farm miles away from a city, or to at least live I a more rural setting. There is something about being closer to nature that calls to me. I relax most when I can look around me and see bush, or mountains, or a beach without seeing urbanisation adjacent to it.

There is something in creation that feeds my soul, that restores me. Yesterday I went for a bike ride along a farm road, and came across the most beautiful vista. Although I coils not linger long -  it was getting on towards supper time - just the few moments spent drinking in that vista did so much for my soul. 

Today, working on our photograph album, I was looking at photos of flowers that both #1 and I have taken in the last 2 years. Even just seeing those photos, and remembering the peace I felt at the time of taking them, being in those environments,  brought me a measure of joy and peace.

Earlier today we went to 'Birds Paradise' on the R60, in Robertson. On the one hand it was soul-destroying to see all these caged birds... I find zoos of any sort distressing.... On the other hand, I was amazed at the variety that existed just in the parrot/parakeet family. Birds from every continent were represented, and though so similar in form, the colour and size variations were astounding. I could not help but be amazed at creation.

I am so grateful for the natural world - for the infinite variety, even of a seemingly static view like a mountainside; for the sense of wonder it inspires; for the joy and peace it gives me. Don't get me wrong - I am a townie and I like my town comforts. Every now and again though  I am grateful for the opportunity to step out of the fast-paced, noisy, technology driven world and stop to appreciate the things that we cannot recreate. 

I am grateful for the mud splashed up my legs and back from my bike ride on a farm road. I am grateful for the river water that is slightly brown from fynbos tannins. I am grateful for the folds in the mountains around us, reminding me of the forces at work beneath my feet, over which no human has control. I am grateful for the mist that shrouds everything in the morning, hiding the world from view, evidence of winter's approach. I am grateful for the frogs croaking in the bog near the house, and their night-time lullaby. I am even, oddly, grateful for the ticks I must daily remove from my dogs, the kids and myself. They remind me of my place in the natural order, and they are a sign that we are miles from civilisation. (I do have a fascination with parasites, I confess, although they are pretty gross.) I am grateful for the heat of the midday sun that bakes, and the opportunity to doze in the sun after lunch. I am grateful for the chill wind that makes having a fire in the evenings so cozy. I am grateful for the foreign bird calls, that remind me we are not in a town.

There is so much in the natural world that I appreciate. I could possibly do a truck load of blog posts on that alone!
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