What is a nature prescription? Why do you need it? Political or health albatross around your neck? A walk out past the edge of town?…just like Dancing in the Moonlight. Take a break.
Tag Archives: landscape
What’s missing here?
How can I get free of this stinking political and health fear-stuffed albatross?
Suppose this page is about you…and suppose you are wound up tighter than a drum by the tension of world wide and local politics and health. This page is your wayfinder.
THE PURPOSE OF THE BLOG AND ALL MY WRITING is to assist you the visitor to begin taking steps along a path toward discovering the regenerative existential cures to be freely found in plants, gardens and the landscape.
THE FIRST STEP is what could be called ‘nature prescriptions’–calibrated doses of time outside. Take a walk. But does the walk heal? What actually happens? What is on the path that takes you on a journey? Where do landscape journeys take you?
And why even take that path and that journey?
A walk, a journey just for the landscape?–heh, I know what you are thinking–we all know what landscape is, right? Same old, same old, right?
flahertylandscape contends it is more–consider this:
The landscape can be a private cocoon to rest the restless.
On the walk you may weave dreams full of surprise and delight yielding true moments of repose.
It can be a journey to unwind, to regenerate, to reconnect with inner peace, to nest away from the daily hustle and bustle.
Up the valley
I am a naive midwestern American kind of guy–born and raised in the suburbs of Detroit, Chicago, Cleveland–not really urban, not really rural. Farming has always been a mystery to this outsider.
Everything I encounter in this agricultural mountain landscape…naively captivates me.
Around my own home the first haycuts are already underway–there is the fragrance of a freshly cut lawn–we all have that familiar smell but the smell of freshly cut pasture hay? We had a couple good rains in May–all pastures were rich with grasses and wild flowers–the wild flowers went to seed first then the grasses–and as the grasses were going to seed in the first days of June we had a spell of sunny warm weather.
All the farmers down here at the valley bottom were out cutting their pastures. Fragrance at daytime and night time. They let the cut hay dry in the open fields for a couple days before binding it for later use as feed.
What does that have to do with ‘Up the valley’?
Well, everything in my topographical homeland was flat. Topography and its impact on life in the mountain landscape intrigues me. So, I took a walk up the valley–up the Lutschine River valley to a village named Gundlischwand (+/- 660 meters above sea level). That means uphill 100 meters–doesn’t sound like much does it? Couldn’t be further–amazing walk–here’s what happened. The valley changed. The topography changed. The plants changed.
I was going back in time.
In the mountains spring comes first at the low valley elevations. Then by the time spring comes to the higher elevations it is normally not days but weeks later.
So when I walked up the valley I was walking back in time. Climatically speaking.
The price of admission?
A stuffy nose, a couple sneezes and a runny nose–all in sequence.
It took me 1/2 hour to walk the next 100 meters.
But that will be a journey for another day.
I’m ok, if…
…I can’t tell the difference between the onset of old age and covid19, 20 or whatever*.
No matter how I look at it…
*covid, China virus, Kung flu, Wang Chung?!! Everybody have fun tonight.
In the passage of time
We are observers.
And what happened during? Were we all there? Growth. Health.
It’s out there…somewhere
Stroked out. Just about three years ago that I was no better than a ‘side of beef’ on a gurney in the back of an ambulance. Four weeks later I was in a wheelchair on the way to a neuro-rehabilitation clinic in the Berner Oberland.
When I arrived, my wife wheeled me to the end of the hallway for a look out through the window. This is what I saw.
What I thought? Only to be able to walk this path. Well it happened. First time sitting up. First time getting out of bed by myself. First time standing. First time with rollator. First time standing without rollator. First step on stairs. First time up one flight of stairs. First time down one flight of stairs. I don’t understand how. Great physiotherapists. Great ergotherapists. A miracle. Faith.
I walk every day now in the Berner Oberland–no rollator–no sticks. Unbelievable.
And that image, that path–magic in the landscape. Thankful.
Hope, I hoped I could take that walk. Hope can be grasped. Step by step. Every morning.
Short story about a strange…
…garden and its even stranger keepers…in Tangier.
Click the orange circle above to listen. This story is 30 minutes about Moroccan landscape, a strange garden, absinthe, chocolate and its plants.
Anyone who has worked in a garden–suffered blisters and callouses in a garden for fruit, vegetables, flowers, medicine–knows there is something more in those gardens. This is for you.
Gardens? Chocolate? Yes, definitely…but I never thought to combine them until the email I received quite recently from an almost forgotten friend. Donkeys’ years ago when I was in Tangier, we worked together on the Baie de Tanger–it was a tourist destination development project.
Now, my friend’s still in Tangier, but as an antique dealer, using as an income cover, a store of second hand furniture. This story is a found antique.
In ‘Christopher and the Hibiscus House’, Christopher tells the story of a Tangier, Morocco garden. In order to visit the garden he was required by the garden’s keepers, a Brit and a Ruskie, to undergo a special ordeal of chocolate and absinthe before walking at sunset in the garden. Christopher first had to visit the land of the green fairies before he could enter their Oval Garden. This is that story.
Readers…by now you know that my blog, flahertylandscape, is all about plants and people–landscape journeys. Sounds fair and safe enough; but what I share with you in the above story goes beyond ethnobotany, beyond strange.
This is in part a freshly edited re-post of a 2015 post I made, entitled Chocolate, Gardens and Magic, which, if I might say so, was a too long read; but it is fortunately well illustrated with Art Nouveau graphics.
Deep in the back row of the upper, upper balconies, which are all full today, you can do whatever you want because no one will see you. Can you hear the sonata?
How can I find my way home?
Mountains Birthing Clouds
Swiss Alps, Bernese Highlands, Jungfrau Region. North side of range.
What more can I say?