Tuesday, March 18, 2008

What To Do On a Rainy Day?

Paint! Yep, I'm getting myself mentally prepared for an eight hour painting session. Oh the agony!!!! I suppose I should look at the bright side of things and remind myself how happy my wife will be when the entire house is finally finished (on the inside). Not only that but the fact that I will have my own little sanctuary, full of bird books, nature art, and a nice, comfy antique chair that I bought last year at an estate sale. A place to sit and read Thoreau, Darwin, and lots of good neo-ornithology literature.

Speaking of Thoreau I just whipped through a short essay of his entitled "Walking".
I've been reading Thoreau since I was around thirteen or fourteen. What inspired my first jump into his writing was the fact that I spent allot of time in Maine, visiting aunts and uncles while on summer break. My first book of his was entitled "Maine Woods", a pretty good read, and one that I should probably pick up again seeing that it has been fifteen years or so. In any case I thought I would share some thoughts and a few of my favorite lines from this essay. It's a great read and short enough to break up the monotony of the day.

If your not familiar with this book, you may be familiar with one of Thoreau's most famous lines that comes from it. " In wildness is the preservation of the world..", I don't think anyone could put it more simply, and eloquently than he did so long ago. If only we had headed his words! Perhaps my favorite line, the former aside is a little earlier in the essay. I quote "we should go forth on the shortest walk, perchance, in the spirit of undying adventure...", I was pleased to find this. I do my best to think this way before I head out for a hike, or even before doing my research. I mean that's what I got into all of this for in the first place. Undying adventure, my nature cries for it, and I would be a miserable man if I had continued painting houses, and what not.

To step into a marsh before sun-up so anxious that there's no need for coffee, knowing that at some point something interesting and inspiring is about to happen. No matter how small, or large. Be it a short glimpse of a Black Rail that only last five seconds, but seems like five minutes, or watching a male and female Virginia Rail slink through the marsh, circling you. When you are only able to get a glimpse of them every few minutes or so, and that glimpse may only be the orange bill, or a rump, but you know that they are there because there is a constant pig like grunt emanating from only a few feet in front of you, completely closed off by a thick stand of sedge...Wooo!

Now I'm ready to paint!


Todd Dixon said...

You've been tagged!
No Ceiling

Texas Travelers said...

Terrific post. I could smell the marsh. Troy

PS: I'm reading Muir's "South to the Amazon, East to Africa".