At home in Hong Kong, I am not aware of the sun. There are times when I cannot even see the sun if I wanted to. I live in a city where skyscrapers fill the sky and smog fills the air. Perhaps one could say the sun is always in the bright city lights, the wind in the air conditioning, and the leaves consist of the plants on my desk. I was never really exposed to the out of doors until I went abroad. Four years ago, my love of exploration brought me to Hotchkiss where I am surrounded with breathtaking sunsets and hushed ripples on the lake. Here, I watch the transition of each season—the red leaves piling and falling off their branches, the first frost, and the first green. Stars witness me tread upon a frozen lake, read on a willow and scream at late night pep-rally bonfires. But when I am engaged by work, I, like many others, forget nature’s magnificence.
Every Tuesday, my extended English class allows us to engage in a walk in the woods. Although our journey is devoid of teaching criteria, we leave with more radiant and reflective minds than any homework assignment would offer. Questions are not asked neither are answers given. It is merely the presence of nature that sustains our growth in learning. We were inspired poets captured by this timberland where too many definitions are left to define. Within these limited hours, we may gather inside the Ranger Cabin and share our written poetry. Someday, we keep walking, and on others, we sit still and listen. Years ago, I may not have understood what brought us here and would most likely take this opportunity to be inactive. However, now knowing that my experience would not be the same in years to come, I captured every detail of it. Nature permits us to escape our born identities, it refreshes and renews us. Theirs maybe a good night sleep or long hot shower, mine is this wilderness. This green grants me life and beautifies everything around me.
We have lived on such beautiful lands since birth, that we become accustomed to it. Indeed, it is a scarce resource and I have learnt to cherish it after eighteen years. Perhaps everyone should wander into the woods just to be lost within its nature because only then would we truly appreciate its luxurious treasures. I breathe it.