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Outer Banks Guide > Outer Banks Blogs > Eve Turek's Natural Outer Banks Blog

Friday, June 30, 2017
Bear With Me
Why do you go outside? It’s summer – it’s hot, it’s humid, it’s buggy. It’s winter – it’s cold, it’s wet, it’s raw. That is one point of view. One way of seeing the world.

Here is another: It’s beautiful. It’s wondrous, full of surprises. It’s invigorating, it’s calming. It offers metaphoric messages of gratitude and possibility, of growth and change.

You know why I go outside. I live by the second world view and I go outside to remind myself of all that is true and beautiful, and to (hopefully) have experiences in the natural world that have spiritual overtones and that I can share with others, either in word or image or both.

Back when I was getting a Masters in Environmental Education from Prescott University, through their distance program, I wrote a paper entitled “The I In Inquiry.” One aspect of Prescott’s philosophy I loved is that we are connected to nature in a way that can enrich both humanity and the natural world. We are not meant to hold ourselves aloof as dispassionate observers or researchers or consumers of natural resources. That philosophy runs contrary to lots of scientific thought, but is more in keeping with indigenous mindsets that somehow find ways to both benefit from nature while honoring and giving back. It is a philosophy that suits my personality perfectly.

One way to honor is to offer shared experiences, and I had a wonderful opportunity recently to introduce grandson Pat to the black bear of Alligator River Refuge. Honor and respect also means keeping a safe distance and we did that, carrying my long lens and keeping near our vehicle while watching parents and cubs. Pete and I went over a week or so later and saw one or two grown bears fairly close to the road, but the experience of cubs in the trees was reserved for the next generation. This was my first time to watch cubs climb (boy, are they fast!), balance on tree limbs and nap. Wondrous, indeed. We also visited the Elizabeth II site, walked Coquina, and climbed Bodie Light.

Speaking of Bodie Light, fellow photographer Ray Matthews and I spent a few hours after dark seeking the Milky Way at the Bodie Island lighthouse recently. I usually can sweet-talk mosquitoes out of biting, but I admit to being swarmed repeatedly while we were out by the marsh. The next morning revealed only one actual mosquito bite but my uncovered hands and neck were spotted with small red non-itching bites. From Jared Lloyd’s experience, I think I was actually bitten by no-see-ums or midges. Happily, the bugs don’t transmit diseases to humans (and happily, my bites don’t itch although they appear rather alarming en masse). I reckon I better learn to sweet talk midges next or I will have to resort to bug spray, something I try to avoid. Why don’t I spray? Over the years I have had the repeated experience of not spraying, and instead asking permission of the bugs around to pass, unscathed. It almost always works. The key for me is asking in a loving and respectful way. I am entering their domain, their home, and I try to be a good and faithful guest. It all goes back to worldview. Midges or not, I believe it’s a wondrous, beautiful world.

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The smallest cub climbed the highest.

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Cuteness is best viewed with binoculars or long lenses.

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That goes double for watching big papa bears! Of course I did have to tell him thank you, and we love you.

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Pete and I saw this bear running down the road from where we were.

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I have only photographed this phenomenon once before successfully. Do pelicans ever drag their wingtips? Yes they do.

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Grandson Pat and I watched a pair of Oyster Catchers at Coquina.

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Of course I am always on the lookout for hearts.

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I love photographing cross currents, although their presence can signal dangerous rip currents.

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Here is a slice of the Milky Way at Bodie Light.

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This is purely playful! Hyperspace (for Star Wars fans) or Warp Speed (for Trekkies) at Bodie Light!

posted by eturek at 2:10 PM

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(c) 2009-2010 Eve Turek & OBX Connection, all rights reserved - read 418211 times

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