#ShowTheLove with @TheCCoalition www.rspb.org.uk/showthelove
My mother had a ritual saying when given glass of whisky on a cold evening: “I can feel it doing me good.” That’s true of nature as well.
Nature does us good. Access to nature allows us to live longer and happier lives. There’s any amount of research and many thousands of figures, all proving that nature make everything better. We are saner, healthier, more decent and more likeable people when we have nature in our lives. I have taken most of this on board because the arguments are convincing – and because I find an answering echo in myself.
Don’t listen to me. But perhaps the best way to direct our society is to listen to the voices of the vulnerable. They are closer to important matters than the rest of us, and can tell us things that louder and stronger voices drown out.
When Eddie and I are out together in a wild place, I need no arguments and no figures to understand that love of nature is as important as every other love. Eddie makes it obvious. He is, as regular readers of this space well know, my younger son, aged 16 and with Down’s syndrome.
Out in the vicious cold we sipped kind warm drinks. We watched the speeding gulls overhead and wondered if for them, the wind was the loveliest thing in the world. As the weather sucked the warmth from our bones, perhaps the gulls could feel it doing them good. Why not? After all, we could.