On a very warm January day, I coaxed Kylie (and Angel--the dog) to walk my three mile staple route. Kylie (who turns nine soon) rode her bike.
A magical day. We found a Mountain Lion track (below)--characterised by no claw marks and an "M" shaped pad. This track was fossilized in the clay, from the last rains over a week ago.
As we finished identifying the track...we looked up to see six Bald Eagles soaring above us. A Cougar track and Bald Eagles! How does a person put monetary value on that? What is having that much wildness available on a simple walk worth? The problem with economics isn't the stuff you can value; it is giving value to that which has none.
I do know that showing a nine year old girl a Mountain Lion track, as Bald Eagles soar above us, is the sort of experience that turns nine year old girls into instant Naturalists. You can't get those experiences out of you; they seep in and permeate. Makes it so that as an adult, all you want to do is work outdoors or escape your cubicle just as quick as you can to get outdoors.
And that is a good thing.
Kylie snapped a couple photos of me. Joni keeps telling me that she is sick of having Jazzy and herself at the top of this blog.
These got in reverse order. Scroll to the bottom to watch Kylie muscle her way up the hill on her bike.