On a cool winter day in January I had the privilege of spending an afternoon with a gentleman as we toured his family land. We were there to capture photographs for the work of preserving his land for all future generations. He showed me the place where he would sit and read while peering out over the wooded land in his youth. We came across a long ago abandoned sawmill which he said milled the wood from the walls to the floors of the house not more then five hundred yards to the east. He told me of the many mills which once lined the landscape and how the community made use of them to raise this small city we know today. He was very passionate and proud as he shared with me the land he grew up on.
I came away with much more then just a few images but with a picture of the land as seen through his eyes. The memories he shared of himself will be with me for all my days. On the way home from our afternoon adventure we spoke of how a great deal of our society and youth has lost the passion, understanding and knowledge of the land and the natural world we inhabit. It seems so much land is being lost to new shopping centers and development of all kinds. It was not long ago driving down a state highway here in town I saw large red X's on the trees to be cut to make room for a wider road. Once we Asphalt and concrete over the land it will be lost for as long as man inhabits the Earth.
Oh, don't get me wrong, I am not necessarily against building new but perhaps we should become better stewards of the land God entrusted to us. Could we plant new tress to replace those lost on land we set aside for all future generations? Perhaps we can learn to make better use of the land we develop.
This all reminds me of an old rock and roll song, "Teach Your Children Well" I believe were the words. As you know with the daily struggle of surviving it becomes increasingly difficult to find the time to teach our children about many things. I believe it is up to you and me to spend a little time even in the backyard to teach our cherished youth about the natural world and the Ecosystem we depend on. A family outing to the local trails is free. See how many different birds, snakes, bees, frogs, plants and trees you can identify. Teach them about the chain of life and how one species cannot survive without the other. Teach them that there is a natural world beyond that which they experience on the Internet.
I encourage all who are interested in preserving land and natural habitat for future generations to join your local Land Trust and if you are able and have the time to volunteer. It is very rewarding. You can find more information at the Land Trust Alliance.
Enter your city or zip code to get your local temperature and air quality and find local green food and recycling resources near you.