“In the woods too, a man casts off his years, as the snake his slough, and at what period soever of life, is always a child. In the woods, is perpetual youth…. In the woods, we return to reason and faith. There I feel that nothing can befall me in life,—no disgrace, no calamity, (leaving me my eyes,) which nature cannot repair. Standing on the bare ground,—my head bathed by the blithe air, and uplifted into infinite space,—all mean egotism vanishes. I become a transparent eye-ball; I am nothing; I see all; the currents of the Universal Being circulate through me; I am part or particle of God. – Ralph Waldo Emerson, Nature
I admit to a bit of excitement. Adrenaline coursing through me as I anticipate the first steps outside into the freshly fallen snow. A few inches of the fluffy stuff fell from early evening and overnight and still drifts downward in lazy accumulation. Not enough to strap on the snowshoes (pity), but enough to make an adventure of the walk. What is winter for if not to be a kid again when it snows?
My destination is the woods. The woods grow silent in the snow, and I fill with reverence. The days inside are long, for there is much to do in this forever connected march to quarterly numbers and customer engagement and cross-department collaboration. But the early mornings are mine alone. And there is magic in the air. And underfoot.
“I am the lover of uncontained and immortal beauty.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson, Nature
The world ought to be filled with wonder, I think. But most people slide into survival mode, leaving their inner child far in the rearview mirror to face all the horrors of the world stoically. But the stoics saw the wonder of nature as Emerson saw it, and shouldn’t we too, while we still have both nature and the capacity to marvel at it?
I always smile when I come across people from places without snow who walk outside in awe, snapping selfies in a frozen wonderland. Living in the snow globe we sometimes forget to shake it up and embrace the swirling magic. Not us, thank you. We’ll walk and swirl in the magic too.