reestablish and restore an ecology
of shared identity.” I would dare to
say that we have all longed at some
point in our modern, busy lives for a
simpler, slower time. We all long to
be a part of community, not separate.
Wildlife and wild lands are part of our
communities. Our wild brethren exist
not for our benefit but as connection
to the greater universe beyond our
doors. Perhaps taking time to just be
amid the ongoing cycle of growth,
death, decay in Nature could help us
to feel less alone and more empowered
to care for the wild things that
share the planet with us. A natural
journey is a great way to capture your
daily discoveries happening in your
yard or on walks. Look up “How to
Make a Unique Nature Journal” on the
National Wildlife Federation blog for
some great tips.
habit and to will be monitoring my
step-o-meter on my phone to make
sure I’ll keeping up the same mileage.
Take some time now to plan ways to
keep up your walking and hiking habit!
We Can Be the Change
According to the journal Nature Climate
Change, global carbon dioxide
emissions have been reduced by an
unprecedented 17 percent during the
COVID-19 quarantine. And while this
doesn’t solve climate change immediately,
it is a step forward on a path
that many people said would never
be possible. To save the planet, the
animals and ourselves from the effects
of climate change more difficult,
uncomfortable decisions to be made.
We’ve already proven we can do it.
The lack of vehicle and airplane
traffic are allowing people to notice
nature more than ever. We are seeing
a surge of visitors at our parks and
trails in Montgomery county during
the pandemic. At Black Hill Regional
Park, the gardens are in bloom and
the meadow is full of birdsong. At this
writing, we are still unsure of when
the Visitors Center will be allowed to
open or when and how programming
will resume. There are many unanswered
questions and concerns for
my family and staff. All I can do is take
it one day at a time, go for a walk, and
weed my garden.
Jennifer Scully is the Facility and & Program
Manager of Black Hill Visitor Center and
Nature Programs in Boyds, Maryland. Prior
to working at Black Hill, she was a Park
Ranger with the Maryland Parks Service.
Jennifer has her undergraduate degree
from Frostburg State in Biological Illustration.
She lives with her family on a small
farm in Frederick County, where they raise
Texas Longhorns and Lionhead rabbits.
Going for a Walk
When the season of teleworking ends
for me, I will most miss my afternoon
walks. I have too often not made time
for daily reflection, but the quarantine
has made me realize how essential
this time is for stress release and
creativity. Walking isn’t only great exercise
but also an opportunity to talk
with our friends and loved ones without
distraction. I’m making a mental
pledge now to continue my walking
McKenzie Elizabeth Photography