I hope you enjoy this article by Richard Louv as much as I did – please click link at end for the rest of the article!
My mother, an artist, hovered above science: she saw the pure beauty of the natural world. And she loved all animals — despite a serious snake phobia and the fact that her older son wanted to become a herpetologist.
When I was about eight years old, my father and I were working in the big garden behind our house. My father stopped dead in his tracks. On the ground in front of him was a two-foot long length of black water hose dug up by the rototiller.
He considered it for a while, then picked it up, went to the basement and found an old Tinkertoy box – a round cardboard tube with caps on each end. He folded the black hose and wedged it tightly inside and capped the tube.
With me in tow, he marched to the kitchen where my mother was making lunch. He handed the Tinkertoy box to her. “Here, there’s a present inside,” he said.
She opened it.
The snakelike hose flew into the air. She did, too. I had never seen her jump that high. In one acrobatic feat, she was on the counter. Screaming. My father the Joker and his short accomplice fled the scene of the crime.
A few months after the Tinkertoy incident, she performed an act of heroism, defying her recently enhanced phobia. In those days, Boys’ Life magazine hosted advertisements in its back pages for all manner of wild animals that you could purchase, mail order. I wanted a raccoon, but my parents offered a compromise.
One day, the mailman delivered a box – about the size of a shoebox – postmarked Silver Springs, Fla., or somewhere like that. Something moved within it.
Curled up inside was large, purplish-black snake, of a species now endangered. Just having that snake today, let alone selling it mail order, would be a crime, and rightly so. But times were different.
The snake was about five feet long (or so it seemed) and I loved it. It made the perfect accessory – worn like a cowboy bandanna or a noose around my neck – as I walked past the bridge club ladies in the living room.
For Full article please visit: http://blog.childrenandnature.org/2014/05/05/12715/
About the Author
Richard Louv is Co-Founder and Chairman Emeritus of the Children & Nature Network, an organization supporting the international movement to connect children, their families and their communities to the natural world. He is the author of eight books, including “Last Child in the Woods: Saving Our Children from Nature-Deficit Disorder” and “The Nature Principle: Reconnecting with Life in a Virtual Age.” In 2008, he was awarded the Audubon Medal.