If you have 5 months of time you’re trying to relieve yourself from you may now rest assured.. the Ozark-St. Francis National Forests recently unearthed an antiquated time-vacuum beneath restored glade-woodlands. It continues to effortlessly function despite its appearance, and significant aging. All that is required of you is to come prepared with yourself, and yourself alone. Traverse the bluffs, the plots of pine, the prodding briers, passed the oblivious armadillos (that truly have the best intentions) and all under the thick curtains of sun. It will appear as if no change has taken place…but upon checking your calendar (for those who still rely on physical calendars like we aren’t in 2018) you’ll notice someone, or something, has crossed off the previous 5 months.
In all seriousness, however, I am bemused by how quickly this term has reached its end. Of course I’m finally beginning to grow quite comfortable in the grooves I’ve made and found myself in. Things tend to work that way, don’t they? I suppose facing a fleeting sense of time is necessary. It encourages you to become more efficient in your efforts. Good, or bad, your plate from which you place endeavors upon becomes larger than before. However, once you reach those final pages closing that chapter, it serves as a way to gain a notable reflection on: yourself, the things you have accomplished, and the things you wish to improve. Grooves keep you going, but grooves may serve as an obstacle preventing you from acknowledging your overall, wide perspective as well. All I know is I’m disappointed to close this chapter of my life, but I’m also eager to capture the next opportunity that appears before me. Might I add as soon as humanly possible, too.
I’ve discovered in this short period of time that my resolve for conservation, and restoration has only strengthened. Before we work in an actual conducive, and generative environment pertaining to our fields of interest, we tend to either romanticize, or grossly misconceive it. I believe that after meeting too many individuals to count who all share the same common interest as me performs as a tool to reaffirm, and encourage my pursuits. To be in the midst of minds who not only thoroughly comprehend anything, and everything including biology, ecology, and methods of restoration, but who are also in a position to actually make/see a noticeable difference, (and have) has become a ceaseless source of inspiration and motivation. I can only hope that I’ll become eligible to acquire a title such as that. I quickly gathered that I am so far from the knowledge and competence necessary, yet so close to being on a path leading towards just that. If I am given a short moment to come up with one thing I have gained from this internship, it’s gratitude. Gratitude I express for being given the opportunity to develop a sense of what this was all about. I can only hope to find something similar again!
Although I know I’m experiencing what feels like a loss of time, (subletting my apartment in town, planning for the trip back to NH, etc), I will quickly acquire more. I’m positive, I’ll have plenty of spare months ahead that I’ll be willing to submit to this so called “time-vacuum”. I wonder if more will be unearthed? Perhaps there are hundreds, and in other places, too? Well, one thing is certain, I’ll be sure assist in the process in efforts to find them.
(Candid photo of me. Notice the impact of 5 months of being sucked away. Looks like absolute misery, right?)
Until next time CLM,
Ozark-St.Francis National Forest