Last weekend, my wife and I took a little trip to Woldumar Nature Center for a little early fall stroll. Woldumar is our default “Nature fix” local retreat. We would regularly take our golden retriever, Baz for walks out there and for him it was about as good as life could get. This trip was different. This was the first time we had ventured out to Woldumar since having Baz put down. While the grieving process has been difficult, there is something about the serenity of nature that seems to help make sense of the loss, even though the emotional aspect continues to remain in flux. The is some sort of calming phenomena when immersing oneself in the natural world…while chaotic, it just seems to make sense in it’s simplicity.
We walked along our normal route, and while I can’t tell you what the specific trail numbers are, it does run the gamut from thick woods to open fields. It’s a nice gentle walk with plenty of scenery. I took along my 2 DSLR’s on with an old 24mm f/2 lens and the other with the nifty 50 (50mm f/1.8). While I probably didn’t same much weight with the 2 bodies, as opposed to carrying one body with a 28-70 f/2.8 zoom, there’s just something about having a fixed focal length lens to force you to think about working within certain limits. I should also add that the sub-$100 piece of plastic and glass is one of my favorite photographic tools lately. It produces remarkable images in still and video and if you don’t own for your camera, you’re really missing out.
One of my favorite parts along our normal route is the grove of pine trees. I don’t know if it’s because my imagination runs wild thinking what it might be like to walk through the trees at night or if it’s just because they’re so tall and silent. Whatever it is, it’s worth that walk every time just to clear my head of the everyday mish-mash of life.
One thing that always strikes me as a bit odd is how few people we see at Woldumar. This is a blessing and a curse. On one hand, it feels very much like our own private natural getaway, but on the other they could use more visitors to help justify more funding. Lansing is fortunate to have several designated natural areas, and I would highly encourage anyone in the area to make a point to get out and enjoy one of them (or all of them if you’re ambitious). Nature – it’s good for you!