We set off with our treasure bags for a journey around Brown’s Folly. This wonderful wooded Avon Wildlife Trust site above Bathford (a few miles east of Bath) is always a hit with the kids.
A few minutes into our adventure I noticed some moss clinging to a tree. Immediately we all got down to have a closer look and touch the damp spongy moss, bringing laughs of delight. It brought a smile to my face to see the children so enthralled by getting up close to nature.
Into the treasure bags went some crumbly pieces of bark covered in moss and on we continued with our walk.
This stroll through the woods got me thinking about the power of nature to inspire and create a sense of a shared experience.
Muddy boots and trousers were clear signs for me that the children had got as much as me out of our time at Brown’s Folly. They loved being in the outdoors peering into the ‘caves’ (in the old quarry) where the bats roost, poking fungi, collecting sticks and listening to birdsong. A calmness seemed to descend over the three of us with the warmth of the sun and the simple pleasures of counting rings on the stump of a tree.
This isn’t and should never be some sort of middle class idyll. Nature is all around us where ever we live and you don’t need to go to a nature reserve. If we use all of our senses the world of wildlife can bring a sense of wonder and awe to our lives showing that there is more to life than consuming and digital distractions. You almost feel as though time moves more slowly when in the outdoors.
We all need that moss experience to get us closer to our roots and the joy of seeing nature as it’s most naked.