Nature is Beautiful

As a marine environmental biology and policy major, you would think that I would be one with nature. That I go hiking, biking, and the like every weekend. The truth of the matter is this; I don’t. Don’t get me wrong, I absolutely love nature. My only issue is that I’m from suburban New Jersey with major cities all around me. So as you can see, there aren’t many “true nature” experiences within a short distance from me. 


However, I got one of my first real experiences in nature last month. My boyfriend has family in Boston who all love to go hiking, rock climbing, and anything else you can think of outdoors. We decided to go visit them one weekend, as my boyfriend and his brother-in-law had plans to go fishing up in Maine, considering it was only a four hour drive from Massachusetts. I decided to tag along, with the intent of going with them. I mean come on, a trip to a beautiful state I had never been to. How could I pass that up?


However, once we got to Boston, I was as close to bailing than ever before. Hearing about how early we’d have to wake up, what we’d have to wear, the numerous bugs we would likely encounter, and how long we’d be fishing for were major turn offs for me. But, I did not drive all that way for nothing. I was determined to follow through with my plans and experience nature firsthand...even if it meant waking up at 2:00 in the morning.


Eventually, 2:30 the next morning came around, and I was unwillingly woken up. We got dressed, still half-asleep, in our heavy sweatshirts, rain pants, and hiking boats. My boyfriend, his brother-in-law, and myself all got into his car and drove in the pitch black morning up to Maine. As tired as I was, it was truly worth it to see the sun rise over the tall trees and mountains of the American northeast. I even got to see two moose for the first time, up close and personal (meaning they were standing directly in the middle of the road).


Once we got to the obsolete river that they were going to fish in, the two boys put on their weighters and got right into the water. I decided to simply watch from the shoreline. What I imagined in my head to be a boring day of getting bitten by bugs and falling into rivers turned out to be a beautiful day full of breathtaking scenery and countless memories. 


The river itself was beautiful, full of tiny waterfalls and a wide variety of fish. The day turned out to be gorgeous, not too cold or too warm. And the best part; no bugs! I didn’t receive a single bug bite. However, being out in the middle of seemingly nowhere really makes you think. Being by that river, watching my boyfriend and his brother-in-law fish, really made me appreciate the beauty of nature and how quiet it was out there. You could literally hear nothing but the moving water, and the smell from the forest was so clean and natural. It really made me look forward to the field I would hopefully be working in soon enough.


Overall, the experience helped me to better appreciate and understand nature’s wonders, and took me out of my comfort zone when it comes to outdoor activities. I got to say that I saw two moose, tried fly fishing, and peed outside (hey, for me, this was really an accomplishment), all in one day! It was a memorable day that I will hopefully never forget, and really made me want to go the extra mile and travel to more beautiful places to experience nature in similar ways.