Last week, July 9-16 I was on vacation in a mountain lake, surrounded by trees, water and nature. I returned home rested, refreshed and craving an episode of my favorite History Channel series Mountain Men only to find that it’s on a small hiatus and a new episode would not return until July 28. I had to find another vehicle for my head to enter the woods after work when I literally don’t have the time to step foot into them myself. This week, just moments ago I finished binge watching Season 2 of Alone.
If you aren’t familiar with the series Alone below is the premise:
These people are skilled survivalists. Ten people are left in the Vancouver Island Wilderness carrying a backpack filled with 10 approved items of survival gear and some cloths. They are alone with no other human contact left to hunt, fish, build shelter and fire and survive the elements and complete isolation. The prize is 500,000.
For the record I’m not a huge reality show fan. Yes I watched survivor 15 years ago and turned my back on the ridiculousness of it and Jeff Probst within a few seasons. The only other reality show I’ve followed is Top Chef. Top Chef came into our lives when our children were young and our dinner menu was limited and mundane. From Top Chef, my husband and I cultivated a greater appreciation of food and cooking. Since then, we’ve enjoyed cooking together and trying new recipes.
In previous posts to this blog I’ve talked about my new found interest in nature and the outdoors. As my mid forties progresses and my children need me less, it is doubtful this is just a passing phase. Each time I enter the woods I gain knowledge, mental clarity or a visual I didn’t have before I went in. So what I have I gained by watching Season 2 of Alone? Ironically I paid close attention to the survivalists when they talked about and demonstrated basic survival skills I didn’t know before; fire starting, shelter building, fishing, gutting fish, edible plants. Some of the contestants were spiritual, earthy and enjoyable to watch because their strong connection to nature was obvious and calming in a way. Through their knowledge, skill set and demeanor they became part of the ecosystem of their environment and they knew they belonged there.
I know that I can’t continue to watch reality wilderness shows and expect to find peace. I have to get out there and do. I am a hands on person. I look forward to doing. I just haven’t had the opportunity. So what do I do when I want to learn something? I buy the book, I read, I do. Right after I finished watching the final episode I purchased a book Wilderness Survival For Dummies and a book about trees and wildflowers in the Maryland and DC Area. I look forward to what awaits me inside these books, learning and doing.