Three more days of my 30 day experiment, and I have so much I WANTED to talk about, but not much to ACTUALLY talk about.
I wanted to discuss my garden, what I’m growing, how I’m tending it, how it’s doing. But honestly, I don’t get down to my garden too often. I water it. I look at it once in a while. Kale and some zucchini blossoms have been harvested a little. I accidentally killed a nice zucchini plant. There are WAY too many squash in my garden, but I’m terrified to get rid of any.
Another topic I had hoped to discuss this month was grilling. In my research, grilling is a fairly environmentally friendly way to cook food, provided you have the right grill. According to Tristam West of the Department of Energy’s Natural Laboratory, a charcoal grill releases twice as much carbon as a gas grill. We use propane, which is one of the friendlier methods. It’s not perfect, don’t get me wrong, but several websites, including Mother Earth News says it’s one of the greener ways to cook outdoors.
I have so many yummy recipes to cook outdoors, too. I have grilled corn salad, veggie burgers, trout from a friend who caught it locally at a lake nearby. We are planning for a big bonfire cookout with the landlords this weekend, but that’s after the 30 days are up, and I wanted to talk about it now.
One of the reasons we haven’t fired up the grill too much this year is I’m working late nights four days a week. Our weekends are slammed with other events and commitments. And time has not been my friend lately. I just feel like I’m pulled in a dozen different directions, and I can’t do everything I want to accomplish. Grilling takes time.
I wanted to spend some time to talk about my swimming, but I’m not sure what to discuss more than I’ve already mentioned. I’m training for the triathlon. I swam with otters the other day. Not like, right next to them, but they were there after I got out. Otters are neat animals to me. If I had magical powers like Harry Potter, I’d be an Animagus and would turn into an otter. I think they fit me rather well.
There are tons of other topics I could have covered this month. Leisure activities such as bird-watching, berry picking, kite flying (wow, is Fort Casey a terrific place to do that!), or just cloud watching. Recreational activities like hiking, biking, or swimming. Exercise activities- nature trail workout, soccer field workout, make your own exercise equipment, playground workouts. But my schedule again hasn’t allowed a lot of these to take place this past month.
My job is pretty cool, I get to spend a large amount of time outdoors. At Fort Ebey, I’ve brought my bike and I get short interval workouts a couple times a day. I take short breaks and hike a short trail. I observe awesome wildlife, otters playing in the surf, deer grazing on the meadows, chipmunks pew-pew-pewing all over the place, eagles standing guard of their nest, raccoons meandering across the road. But it is taking its toll on my grand plans for summer.
I was hoping for some hilarious stories to share, like how barnacles massive genitals saved them from becoming a souvenir, but the most I’ve gotten was someone asking what time the eagles would be out. The last couple of nights, the Air Field has had pilots practicing (whatever they practice, I’m not exactly sure) into the evening. It disturbs a lot of the campers, but they understand there’s not a whole lot we can do about it. Pilots have to practice. It’s cool to watch sometimes, but dear god, it is LOUD.
My experiment is nearly complete. I can say I do spend a good amount of time outside, in nature, and I appreciate the natural community. I thrive outside and I’m glad I live in an area which is conducive to my lifestyle of exercising and spending time outdoors.
What’s your favorite thing to do in nature? What would you do if you could spend more time at your favorite place outdoors?