Quarantine Causes A Collective Return To Nature
Start writing a post
Community

Quarantine Causes A Collective Return To Nature

Parks and hiking trials provide a much-needed escape for those in quarantine.

40
Quarantine Causes A Collective Return To Nature
Courtney Hittle

A few days ago, my boyfriend, our friend and I went to Busiek State Park to explore for the day. We pulled into a packed parking lot, with cars lining the side of the road. While we were hoping it'd be less crowded, it was uplifting to see so many people adventuring and appreciating nature, despite the saddening circumstances. The busy trail reminded me of my trip to Canada in August, where hundreds of people lined the trails and suspension bridges, just to get a view of an astonishing feature of nature. While I was struggling with my new state of being unemployed, as I knew many of the people around me were, too, I couldn't help but be reminded of the important things in life.

As someone who worked as a host in a restaurant, it was disheartening to see the lack of business we received in the few days before carry-out and to-go orders were our only mode of service. I felt for our servers, as well as for local restaurants and retail stores who were dealing with the same things. Driving down one of the main roads in town after most places had shut down, it was odd being able to hear the silence.

And while it was eerie and scary, because it meant a detour from normalcy and a dark financial turn, it was oddly peaceful. I started to think about what was essential for living. Things like new clothes and fancy meals didn't have as much shine as they used to. I didn't ache to spoil myself with ice cream.

Instead, I found peace in the outdoors. Whenever I met up with my best friends from high school, we took to the woods to clear our heads and catch up on what we'd been up to. I'd walked a local trail after a hard break-up and loss of a classmate. Nature was always there to remind me that I was a little drop in a big fountain, and that it was necessary, at times, to slow down.

The woods seemed to hold a similar place in other people's hearts, as we passed families, couples, single joggers, and numerous furry friends. The virus may have knocked them down, but they knew where they needed to go to build themselves back up again.

Pawprints and Humanprints alike in the muddy trail at Busiek State Park.Courtney Hittle

With a variety of different trail options, the Busiek State Park provided a "choose your own adventure" mentality, much like the popular book 80s and 90s book series. It was exciting to see so many young ones, pups, and adults energized by the scent of adventure, one that many of us had forgotten altogether, due to our daily grinds and fixation on technology.

Springfield photographer and director Christian Gideon shared on his Instagram page, "I've always explored these spaces on the fringe of society. Back roads. Ghost towns. The overlooked. Returning to these spaces together as a way of staying safe and staying sane has given them new meaning. Part of me feels like I was preparing for this moment my whole life."

I felt like this personal reflection on what seemed like a mass return to nature summed up what I, and so many others must be feeling right now.

I found myself thinking about how incredibly lucky I was to not have to feel this sort of financial uncertainty and emotional collapse every day, due to the privilege I carry. It saddens me to know that so many families regularly struggle with trying to qualify for unemployment, and if they do, living off of that small sum each month.

The reality of all of this hit when we made it back to the end of the trail, after four and a half hours of hiking. On a rock, shattered pieces of pottery with writing on them told individuals stories regarding the virus.

What looked like had been a mug, read, "Corona Virus. You took my: safety, piece of mind, graduation, counseling job, coffee job." The weight of this epidemic and all of the strife it has caused couldn't be ignored. But knowing that this was a shared experience, however troubling, made it somewhat easier to bear.


Broken pieces of pottery at Busiek State ParkCourtney Hittle


Broken pieces of pottery at Busiek State ParkCourtney Hittle


Broken pieces of pottery at Busiek State ParkCourtney Hittle

Report this Content
This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
Featured

What Your Car's Color Says About Your Personality

Your color choice speaks volumes. It doesn't just emit an image for the car, it also says something about your style and personality! It's a form of self-expression. Are you confident? Are you sophisticated? Are you easy-going? Are you outgoing? Are you practical? As you're reviewing car sites for your next car purchase, what color will you opt for? Find out what certain color choices says about you!

65355

When it comes to car shopping you likely have certain preferences, including what color it should be. Your color choice speaks volumes. It doesn't just emit an image for the car, it also says something about your style and personality! It's a form of self-expression. Are you confident? Are you sophisticated? Are you easy-going? Are you outgoing? Are you practical? As you're reviewing car sites for your next car purchase, what color will you opt for? Find out what certain color choices says about you!

Keep Reading... Show less
Featured

30 Songs On My Back-To-School Playlist For Walks To And From Class

Headed back to in-person classes means you need a pretty banging playlist to power you through those walks to class.

65103
Photo by Zen Chung on Pexels

I don't know about you, but I start each day off with a one-mile walk to class. I have to have good tunes flowing through my ears during those 20 minutes, not to mention the walks between classes and the walks home. So, here is my 30 song playlist to get me through this almost unfamiliar concept we call walking to class.

Keep Reading... Show less
Featured

Be Kind to Yourself: 8 Mental Health Tips to Try

One way you can improve your quality of life is to take care of your mental health. As a result, you'll feel less depressed and be able to enjoy spending time with friends and family more often. These mental health tips might be just what you need to forget about your problems.

39139

One way you can improve your quality of life is to take care of your mental health. As a result, you'll feel less depressed and be able to enjoy spending time with friends and family more often. These mental health tips might be just what you need to forget about your problems.

Keep Reading... Show less
Featured

Should You Own An SUV If You Live In A Snowy state?

There are many reasons to own an SUV. If you live in a cold state or a rural area, you will see that owning an SUV is very important.

39250

The gas and oil prices are too high to run in a smaller vehicle. You are better off with an SUV for hauling cargo and driving larger loads around the town. In addition, owning an SUV is more comfortable and safe than driving a smaller vehicle.

Keep Reading... Show less
Featured

Understanding Why Dog's Lick You

It is a natural instinct for dogs to lick

55853

Why do dogs lick?

Keep Reading... Show less
Facebook Comments