Wilderness Engagement

I have never been a big nature person. I do appreciate the colors and sounds it has to offer, but I think I prefer suburbs or urban areas, with the constant chaos, there’s always something new going on. Of course, sometimes it’s good to get away, and this is when I truly start appreciating nature. When the chaos gets a bit too much, I try to go away somewhere quiet for a while. A couple of years ago when I lived in Switzerland I used to bike to a nearby lake, surrounded by trees, and just sit there in silence for a couple of hours. Throughout high school, we have also had the opportunity to engage in new surroundings and learn about new things, and my most recent experience included a sailing trip to Hong Kong. The main focus of the trip was to learn sailing and interact with the sailing group as a whole. Due to lack of wind, however, it allowed me to have some downtime while sailing between locations, and allowed me to immerse myself in the surroundings (sometimes quite literally). This experience simply helped me highlight the importance of protecting nature and making an effort to be sustainable. At times while sailing, the peace and aesthetic of nature would be interrupted by plastic waste, truly contrasting with the environment. Through this experience, I also got to be mindful of the waste we left behind and disposed of as much of it as we could in the right way.

Aside from what is to be expected as the knowledge received from a trip of this nature, I learned how to make food for others while being mindful and not wasting. This is a skill that I plan on reinforcing really, since I find it important to manage stuff like this and help the environment in some way.

Aside from this, I have started to learn to appreciate nature, without technology, without music, just appreciating it for what it is. Appreciating something in the moment instead of later on once you look back at it on your phone has been something I started practicing after I moved here and started interacting with the environment. Whenever I am in nature I do my best to appreciate everything in the moment, and pay close attention to the little details within my surroundings.

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