This being Thanksgiving Day in the U.S., it's time for feasting, family, friends - and maybe some football. Hopefully, there's also an acknowledgement of that for which the holiday is named. The "giving thanks" part.
What's on your gratitude list?
The natural world is way up there on mine. I suppose it's not surprising that I ended up combining a life-long interest in photography and an affinity for the great outdoors. Having also spent time as an executive in corporate America I can assure you I prefer working out in the field with my camera. The first career was successful but outdoor photography is more rewarding.
Nature is fascinating and spectacularly beautiful - but its attributes extend far beyond its many noteworthy physical characteristics. The natural world is a powerful tonic. It lifts the spirit. It soothes. It inspires.
Things move at a slower pace in the great outdoors. It's good to exit the fast lane every once in a while. What better place to do that than among the trees, in the mountains, or at the ocean? Spending time in nature can coax you to become more mindful. Patient. Deliberate.
Nature also provides a respite from noise in its many forms: from the urban environment, from the distractions of ubiquitous gadgets, and from a world gone increasingly haywire.
"Out there" you can leave it all behind (at least temporarily). Trade all that manmade noise for the music nature has composed. Listen to elk bugling during the rut or leaves rustling with the breeze. Hear the distant thunder or water lapping at the shore or the whisper of an eagle's wings as it flies low overhead.
Sometimes there's no sound at all - which is, of course, also music. The silence between the notes, as they say.
There is something different to enjoy each season. Each month. Each day. Every hour! Nothing in nature ever appears exactly the same. If one takes the time to look - really look - there is no end to what can be seen.
Nature is one heck of a gift-giver and we are the lucky recipients.
In every walk with nature one receives far more than he seeks.
Wishing you and yours a Happy Thanksgiving!
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