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Embrace the changes

I love the longer lighter evenings we get in Ireland when the hour changes, it's great being able to eat dinner in the garden, and takes all the pressure off finding a camp spot when we're away.

Late summer evening at Nendrum, County Down, Ireland

But mainly it's the variety that I love from living up north; winters dark and cold, summers when the sun barely sets. It's hard to get bored with a place when the light is constantly changing. And the changing seasons bring lots of other changes that keep things interesting; the leaves fall off the trees, lie thick and crunchy on the ground leaving bare branches behind. If you're lucky everything will get a smattering of snow before we're back to all the joy and hope of new life sprouting up in the spring. I find it gives a sense of time passing, and marks each year in a way that I would really miss if I lived closer to the equator.

I think the main reason I like to focus on the ever-changing nature of the wild world around me is a feeling of acceptance generated within me. We are all getting older, time marches on no matter how much we wish it would slow down, we have all lost loved ones, and know we will lose others, and will be gone ourselves one day, but when I see the trees give up their leaves without any drama each year, it inspires me. To immerse myself as much as possible in nature, and watch these changes helps me to accept them in my own life. After all, no matter how sophisticated as a species we become, we can't escape the fact that we are part of this natural world, to be born, to grow and to die like all the living things of this beautiful wild world.

So I say - embrace the changes, of the light, the seasons. Get out there and pay attention to the little changes throughout the year on your doorstep and find peace in yourself.

Tide going out at Ballintoy, County Antrim, Ireland

Don't want to wait a whole season? Get yourself to the coast and watch the tide come in or out - you'll feel as changed as the landscape before you!

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