‘it seems to me that we look at nature too much and live with her too little’

When I was about 11, I have a memory of being with school friends in a sloping meadow, and growing in the meadow were these tiny wild strawberries and we loved picking and eating these delightful treats, like sweets to us. Early autumn we’d pick blackberries and foist them on our mothers to bake us apple and blackberry crumble or pie. When a little older, after sheep had left the nearby fields they’d been grazing, we’d pick the field mushrooms that would shortly follow and my children in turn loved the bilberries that would appear on the Yorkshire moors. But yet I’ve observed mothers discouraging this ‘dirty’ practice. Heck – I’m sure we swallowed a maggot or two along the way. I really enjoyed this post by Liz Knight at Forage Fine Foods – not least as I’m an Oscar Wilde fan. It’s where I want to be, back, living in nature, rather than watching.

Forage Fine Foods

FORRAGING_048‘It seems to me that we look at nature too much and live too little with her’ I’ve just heard this Oscar Wilde quote on radio 4. His words set my hairs on edge. Was Oscar a forager? I’m not sure and to be honest I’m such an uncultured type I don’t even know what it connection to the wilds was (apart from lying on grass with a cigarette in his beautiful mouth) but he put his refined finger right on the button in this statement & in a way that’s utterly apt 130 years later. Lots of people in our country have nature disconnect – that’s a fact. Lots of us try and reconnect with nature by looking at her – we go for woodland walks, climb mountains, gaze at the stars but not many of us live with her. Our culture has become so distant from the notion that we belong to nature: in fact, since…

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6 thoughts on “‘it seems to me that we look at nature too much and live with her too little’

    1. Yeah, I was preparing blackberries for a crumble the other day and one emerged as I was washing them, and it did make me wonder how many don’t and didn’t get filtered! But you know we were talking about the couple and their lack of disease – I have this theory that we’ve been so obsessed with cleanliness and germs and yeah – not eating the odd maggot etc that we’re losing disease resistance and with antibiotics losing their power, nature’s going to cull us eventually!!

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        1. Yes, I have. But it’s probably not a single thing, but a combination of factors in our generally imbalanced lifestyles now.
          My son’s first three years of life were spent outdoors and he’d run in for something to eat and I’d have to feed him something whole as he’d just run back out with it again. I dread to think what microbes and dirt he was eating too.
          My daughter spent her first three years of life in an urban environment and the great outdoors was a ‘trip’. There are very noticeable differences in their health.

          Liked by 1 person

            1. My daughter was diagnosed with asthma at 3 months old and not so long ago was hospitalised it got so bad. She was always in a general state of being unwell, but not usually serious. My son was rarely ill.

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