It has been about eight years since the time I moved to a part of this rare planet, where one can see Northern Cardinals. The males are bright red, with almost round appearance when their feathers are fluffed up, a short, thick beak, and an adorable, annoyed-for-God-knows-what kind of expression on their faces. To draw a popular culture reference, “Red” in the Angry Birds game & movie is roughly based on them.
All these years and thousands of sightings later (most of which are in my own backyard,) every single time he appears before me, I am as thrilled, as overjoyed, and as much in awe as if I was beholding the beautiful creature for the very first time in my life.
These alive, enchanted, wonder-filled moments that my heart experiences is true not just for the Northern Cardinal though. I must confess dear reader, that it is true also for a Blue Jay, a Downy Woodpecker, a Red Admiral Butterfly, a Gray Squirrel, a Cottontail Rabbit, a Weeping Willow, an Acorn branch, a Maple shedding golden leaves in the autumn wind, a snow-covered leafless tree, a flock of Canada Geese, climbing vines covering a tall tree’s trunk, a hill disguised by clouds…Well, it is true for practically every little or big glimpse of life from her mighty vast kingdom, that nature decides to show to me, or should I say, I care to pay attention to. No sight or sound in nature ever ceases to surprise me, or becomes stale. Every time it is new – after all each time, it IS new.
I feel grateful not only for what’s before me, but also for that first timer’s like overflowing joy and wonder I experience every time upon seeing it. Both things are priceless for a human. The gratitude therefore, on occasions, is accompanied by fears .
Crosses my mind sometimes, a scary thought – of all these suddenly not appearing one day. Then, there is another scary thought – of one day, suddenly not being able to feel that precious, first timer’s like joy and wonder. Upon contemplating which of these two scenarios is more perilous, the conclusion is clear – the latter. Because, as a direct effect, it will inevitable lead to the former too.
Rachel Carson (May 27, 1907 – April 14, 1964), a marine biologist and probably the twentieth Century’s finest nature writer said:
The more clearly we can focus our attention on the wonders and realities of the universe about us, the less taste we shall have for destruction.
A conservationist, she was the woman who challenged the notion that humans could obtain mastery over nature by chemicals, bombs and space travel. Her sensational book Silent Spring (1962) warned of the dangers to all natural systems from the misuse of chemical pesticides such as DDT, and questioned the scope and direction of modern science, initiated the contemporary environmental movement and lead to the creation of Earth Day and formation of Environmental Protection Agency.
More than half a century later, the collective consciousness of humanity is slightly better awakened to the now urgent and desperate need of protecting nature from our own hands and also to the truth that we need nature and not the other way round. As a result, today a number of international days are observed round the year – aiming at raising and spreading this awareness in more and more people, but we have a very long way to go, and fast.
Probably you are a concerned environment/wildlife champion, activist, steward, educator, or you are involved in a sustainable business. Or, you simply love nature, for being part of the same nature, loving her could only be our innate response. In all these instances and more, I am hoping that you want to stay inspired and well aware of all the important environmental and wildlife observance dates of the year.
Here is my one-of-a-kind, printable calendar/planner for the year 2022 – meant just for nature lovers and environmentally aware – a New Year’s love letter to nature and her magical kingdom.
It highlights all the wildlife and environmental awareness days celebrated internationally and in the US, and each important day is accompanied by a beautiful photograph of the subject and its official website address for your quick reference.
I am sure you will enjoy using it as much as I have enjoyed creating it, and can’t wait to know your thoughts on it. Download the calendar/planner for free.