Slowing Down   Zachary Stewart
  Sep 16, 2007 21:23 PDT 

James and James,

Just about everywhere in the Smokies is beautiful, in my opinion! And
yes, the typical unappreciative American does get on my nerves...
we always enter Gatlinburg via Little River Road, and constantly have to
pull off to let somebody driving at about 50mph go by... I can't
understand why people would even use these beautiful scenic roads if
they just wanted to speed down them and ignore the scenery... and I
imagine nobody like that gets out to hike... it's a shame that so many
people don't appreciate what's left of our pristine Eastern forests. I
don't even see why people such as that even visit the National Park.
Also, I found a couple of very interesting pocket-sized hiking guides by
the Great Smoky Mountains Association, "History Hikes of the Smokies",
and "Hiking Trails of the Smokies" while in the mountains; reading the
history of GSMNP and these trails from books such as these add even more
enjoyment to hiking in the Park!

- Zac
RE: Slowing Down
  Sep 17, 2007 18:07 PDT 

    For many people, lack of appreciation of natural scenery is a byproduct of the self-induced hectic paces at which they live. Our modern society is one of constant self-indulgence with artificial stimuli. Consequently, the visual appreciation of a landscape is largely a lost art, if people truly were ever capable of that appreciation. Still something stirs inside many Americans to make them want to experience nature. Some want to turn back the clock and experience a simpler, quieter time, but alas, in some virtual form replete with head phones. When the vast majority of modern American's get into nature's realm, they don't know what to do.

      One of the reasons that ENTS was created was to bring the essence of tree beauty and spirit within the grasp of people who have the capacity to appreciate trees, but need a little help in connecting and companionship to prevent them from feeling isolated. The good side of technology is the capability it gives tree people to share experiences with one another over great distances. So here I sit, babbling away, occasionally looking up to stare out the window and into the blue green needles of a glorious white pine and listening to the penetrating shrieks of blue jays. Don't know what it all means, but I like it. I like it.     

RE: Slowing Down   Zachary Stewart
  Sep 17, 2007 21:00 PDT 


That's deep... almost poetic! And oh so true... I wonder what would
happen if our modern conveniences were to suddenly vanish - I'll bet
most Americans would not be able to survive! I wish more people
appreciated the outdoors... and yet everybody wonders why so many people
are very overweight and unhealthy! They don't ever experience the
grandeur of the Great Outdoors except if it's on TV... and only if the
remote is laying close by so they don't have to get up and
turn it on manually.

- Zac