The more high-tech everything becomes, the more I want to switch off and go back to nature. I have a ‘smart’ phone but use it only for text and email – no Facebook or Twitter. I have no need to update people on my whereabouts constantly and post selfies. I’m more likely to switch off and disappear for a time.
I’ve always loved the wild, whether climbing in a vast and remote landscape, such as Ben Nevis and the Cairngorms, falling asleep on a leafy, spongy woodland floor and not waking until morning (I went to watch ‘my’ badgers, but they saw more of me that I did of them), walking with my dogs and drinking in beautiful scenery, or simply doing a spot of gardening.
I watched someone painting their garden fence the other day; their radio blaring out. I couldn’t understand why they wanted to drown out the birdsong and the rustle of the wind in the trees.
Then there was the girl in Big Wood, Erddig, walking with eyes to the ground, earplugs in.
I don’t understand this desire for noise. Are people afraid of solitude? Are they afraid of silence?
When I have company on my walks I like to be with someone who doesn’t feel the need to talk constantly, someone who feels comfortable walking along without exchanging a word, just happy, like me, to be present in a world of beauty.
As the pace of life seems to get ever faster, and the more technical our lives become, the more I feel that time spent mindfully in nature is crucial. When I immerse myself in nature, I get a deep feeling of relaxation and a reawakening of my senses.
I’m fortunate that I live by the National Trust property Erddig, and enjoy many hours wandering down paths and through woodland, especially Big Wood.
When I am outdoors, my mind fills with the onrush of scenery—air, mountains, trees, animals. To me, this is what it is to be happy.