I find a restorative sense of solitude at rock concerts. The noise of the right kind of show creates an aural cocoon, and even though everyone is in close proximity, almost no one’s attention is on anything but the stage. I guess I’d say that one of the under-appreciated benefits of live performance is that it allows the viewers to focus their attention on a happening that is outside of their self and their routine way of being.
I find my peace and quiet in the barn with my horse. We’ve been at a couple barns during our 12 years together, and it doesn’t matter where we are, his stall is always where I go to clear my head. Plus, the cats at the barn we’ve been at for the past five years have become my little shadows, so their company is an added bonus.
Hopefully I get to experience this soon, I’m headed out on a solo drive from the Dallas region to New Mexico next week. I plan on camping at a few different spots, White Sands for sure but after that I’ll kind of aimlessly drive around the southern portion of the state. Might cross the border into Puerto Palomas, head up see the Very Large Array satellite dishes, take a dip in at a hot spring in Truth or Consequences, NM and attempt to capture that feeling.
If anyone has any suggestions for me I’d greatly appreciate it.
I have a suburb getaway on the St. Croix river near Afton, mn…It’s not “secluded” by any means but I have been able to enjoy at least 30 minutes of alone time…Otherwise it would be up north of the twin cities on a car camp getaway.
It’s really hard to find any place nowadays where you don’t run into someone…
So sad to hear that… :</ I have 3 daughters but being a male I really have no idea of that feeling.
Beautiful description of Yellowstone , I really would like to pay a visit there one day as its a really interesting place ecologically. A question , have you ever seen the wolves of Yellowstone ?
It will be a tragedy both ecologically , culturally and spiritually if Tasmania loses its quolls and devils as happened with the Thylacine. But there is some hope on the way to mitigate the devil decline judging by recent reports.
I’m kind of curious to ask you , could you tell me about any encounters you have had with devils or quolls in the wild ?
I’ve never worked with any of the Australasian marsupials or encountered any in the wild so the only marsupials I have any experience with are the opposums of the America’s , so I am curious to hear any annecdotes you might have.
I’m gonna jump in here again, with a reminder that this is a discussion for people to share about their favorite places to be alone. I appreciate your thorough response, but let’s try to keep things on topic.
No problem , I did kind of go off on quite a tangent , I admit. But I do think its in someway relevant as it sort of cuts to the issue of how experientially we can access those important places without being hampered by any sensations of fear which ultimately detracts from the experience.
Not a lot, actually. When we first moved to Tasmania from mainland Australia we used to go camping with the kids a lot(now it’s more organised camps and events, sailing scouts etc)we heard Tasmanian devils most of the time, depending on where we camped, more inland than coastal…and sadly you used to see them as roadkill occasionally when one would get hit while dragging their dinner off the road…they are scavengers, not hunters. Now it’s even rare to see a devil road kill because there are relatively so few in the wild. The other thing of note (especially via the burgeoning tourism sector) is the amount of roadkill on Tasmanian roads. Being an island fecund withsmall marsupials, more visitors every year(blame MONA, awesome scenery and great food) the loss of the apex scavenger is very visible. We support our local UTAS research program in various ways and always take overseas students to the local reserve (uni partnered) to see them.
We would often encounter Eastern quolls Dasyurus vivverinus going about their nocturnal business and while they are still about they too are much less frequent. I believe they have discovered a small population on mainland Australia when they thought the population was zero due to feral cat and fox predation.(cats are huge problem for wildlife everywhere) Unfortunately the most recent quoll I observed closely was roadkill
The spotted tail quolls Dasyurus maculatus also threatened but are a bit more robust and we hear them from time to time if we’re camping at night, though the brush tail possum is much more prevalent in National Park areas due to available food easily scavenged. Not a great set of anecdotes but with kids we tend to camp in NP supported areas anyway to lessen impacts in fragile environments. One trip to the plateau Skullbone Plains, this time last year with Tas Land Conservancy gave us sounds of all three Dasyurus but that was pretty special. That’s where ‘The Hunter’ with Willem Defoe was filmed. One can easily imagine the thylacine inhabiting that environment, but like us, really preferred the warmer eastern corner where the pickings were easy, before colonists and their sheep arrived, and that’s a whole other story.
We’ve had some rain, so for now, The Kindom is safe… but not forever.
Here’s one of mine. It’s hardly private or secret, it’s right in downtown Columbus. And it has less to do with woods than it does with noise. Sensenbrenner Park is right across the street from the Nationwide Insurance world HQ, but take a look at that fountain. It totally blows away all the street noise as you sit near the rushing waters and just take a minute to close your eyes. It’s one of my favorite places downtown and is more of a Wassereinsamkeit than Waldeinsamkeit, but it does the trick. I mean, yeah, there’s some Wald, but it’s more about the sound.
My place is in my gardens and my teeny little Playhouse. My ex built a little garden shed out of stuff I’d been salvaging for years. Everything is reclaimed, including the siding (my neighbors took off 100 year old hard wood siding). I got the shingles and factory sealed windows (none of the match, lol) from a construction yard that was putting stuff out on the curb. I painted it to match my Painted Lady Victorian. It’s built just my size–I’m very short but my ex and sons are well over six feet. They can’t comfortably fit. The grave of my little companion dog is tucked into a little alcove beneath a 130 year old pine next to it. That’s how my most extensive cottage garden happened. I had my head down, planting and grieving her loss, until I suddenly realized I had created a magical place. There are no yellow flowers, except on her grave (because she was a blonde). All my meditation, deep pondering and silent communing with the natural world is done while I garden. No one disturbs me and my property is set back from the public. Growing things, having my hands in the soil and living in my mind is my special place.
Have to say that I think a burial by an old tree is a lovely way of remembering and honouring the life of a cherished pet or indeed even a loved one.
A couple of years ago I was a pallbearer at the funeral of a very dear neighbour who had a natural burial and it seemed to me to be such a more meaningful and respectful ritual to honour and celebrate his life and to grieve his passing.
It was in a natural burial site where trees were being grown and plants for pollinating insects like bees and butterflies and nearby there was a little kestrel hovering up in the sky in search of mice in the fields below. It was just so much more fitting and dignified than a church ceremony.
Gone off topic a bit there , but what you wrote reminded me of it.
This is a good place to experience it, as long as you don’t stay on the main path, but get on some little parallel paths where not a lot of people are passing by.
Feeling alone, in this big forst, surrounded by all this blue, it is quite relaxing Indeed and impressive.
I must say that anywhere I’m confronted with my smallness and limitations provides me with a sense of calm and quiet, even just being underwater, holding my breath, or “stopping in woods on a snowy evening” in the Adirondacks. But when you described “Waldeinsamkeit” three places jumped from my heart to my head: a midnight enjoyment of the peak of Black Mountain at Philmont Scout Ranch; the rocks at the chapel on Rudd Pond in the Berkshires (when no campers are around); and a 50th-birthday solo hike up [Quaggy Jo in Aroostook State Park, Maine]
The butterfly house at the Detroit Zoo. Despite being located in an urban area and a stones throw from an expressway, it is incredibly peaceful. Michigan winters can be brutal and I have found stepping inside that building , sitting on one of the benches , even surrounded by other people is very calming. Every once in a while I will tell my wife I need some " Zen " , and she knows where I will be.
That’s a lovely place you mentioned and an unusual Waldeinsamkeit, I can definitely empathise , I hate winters in the Northern hemisphere and whenever I spend one here I always long for the tropics.
I agree re trees and death sites, there is so much historical linkage. There was a story re a Buddhist temple in Japan doing exactly that/siting remains in a forest&planting more trees…