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Tuesday, August 9, 2022

Beyond the Book: Natural Places

Do you have favorite spots in nature, such as a view, the woods, a sea or lake shore?

As far as I’m concerned I have two wonderful places in nature. In fact, I’d have a hard time choosing one over the other.

My first favorite place in nature is near the Atlantic Ocean. I’ve been to several beaches from Florida up to Maryland, and I found them all to be awe inspiring. I don’t mean lying in the baking sun trying to keep sand out of bathing suit either. I don’t mean going to outlet malls, playing golf, or going to shows, which is what I think many people love about the ocean. I love the sense of timelessness that hangs over the ocean. My problems seem insignificant when I’m watching the waves roll in and feeling the breeze blowing across the water. It pleases me no end to see people fishing for something special to eat. I like to look at small weathered cottages scattered across the landscape. I especially like the ones that have names. I wonder how long their families have lived near the water. And nothing is better than stopping by a roadside stand to buy fresh, local grown vegetables. Don’t forget history either. I live in South Carolina so if you go to the coast you can find historical sites, old homes, and gardens everywhere. Remember, I was a history teacher for thirty five years so of course I love the historic districts. My favorite restaurant in the South Carolina low country is The Seewee, which is located in a former general store built in the first part of the last century. It’s located on Highway 17 out of Charleston in Awendaw, SC. They serve only local, fresh caught seafood. The last time I went there I had fried shrimp, turnip greens, baked sweet potatoes, and fried okra. Southern cuisine at it’s best!!

Of course houses and restaurants probably shouldn’t be mentioned when I’m talking about nature, but I’m throwing them in anyway.

My second favorite place is the North Carolina highlands. We go to Sugar Mountain every year. Besides the spectacular scenery, the first thing we noticed about the area was how quiet it was. There were plenty of other people nearby and a little college town a few miles away, but the mountains seemed to swallow the sound. All we heard was the wind singing in our ears. Sometimes we heard an owl calling or a hawk cry out, but mainly the mountains begged us to let our troubles go and find peace in the stillness. I’ve never slept so well in my life as I do up there. The air smells like air ought to smell, fresh and clean. When I’m up there my allergy symptoms all but vanish only to return once I go back home. We walk along small hiking trails and find hidden waterfalls. We revel in the coolness. The temperature is always ten to fifteen degrees cooler in the high country than it is at home so we can get out and enjoy nature. We almost always see wildlife. I was having breakfast and just happened to look out the window in time to see a fox crossing the path. Once we saw a mama bear with three cubs. Don’t worry about our safety. We never go near wild animals. We were inside when we saw the bears too. We went up in June and all we saw was deer, though. 

How about you? Do you have favorite spots in nature?

1 comment:

  1. thank you for hosting me today. I posted earlier but not sure if it went through!! I'd like you to know you're appreciated. Nora