If you are stuck in the weeds, look at the ecosystem

This morning I’m writing about how action in the context ecological crisis will sometimes feel a long way from anything to do with nature.

I wrote this week about my reflections following reading ‘What if we stopped pretending?‘. One was that the ecological crisis will require action on many fronts to build resilience and support regeneration. On a day-to-day level, many of these actions will feel a long way from that greater cause, but it is important, I think to maintain a connection between the means and the ends.

This week and last I have had my head in helping my colleagues at Hazel Hill Wood with providing back-up power supply to our off-grid buildings. The sorts of things that need doing are negotiating contracts with suppliers, managing resources, working with the team to set objectives, thinking about fundraising.

All of this feels a long way from ecosystem regeneration and supporting people’s connection to nature, which are our aims for the wood, and my motivations in the project. But there is a thread that connects the two:

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What if we had a seasonally adjusted workweek?

This week I wrote about observing the seasons and how these might cause us to reflect on the patterns we adopt in our lives. Yesterday, I was exploring the idea of the pattern of the workweek as a cultural phenomenon. Today I’m exploring the idea of a seasonally adjusted workweek, and how this might help us understand the ecological crisis.

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Inspiration from balance : when the day = night

This week day equalled night.

I see the seasons as sine and cosine waves. Peaks and troughs for different phenomena offset from one another.

At the summer solstice, the hours of day light peak, but the rate of change of day light is zero. Nothing much seems to change.

At this time of year the hours of daylight are only half way between their winter and summer extremes, but the rate of change is at its maximum.

For an instant everything is in balance, when day equals night. But there is no pause. This is also the time of maximum change. We are now moving away from balance at the highest rate of the year.

Close up it is moving rapidly but taking the longview there is dynamic equilibrium.

I find lots I can draw inspiration from in my creative and design work at this time of year.

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Book notes – The Hidden Life of Trees

Black and white image of a tree canopy in winter, looking a bit like a series of river tributaries joining together.

It feels right as I take on my new role at Hazel Hill Wood to read the Hidden Life of Trees. This is an evolving post based on notes I take as I read through the book.

From the foreward: ‘The author’s deep understanding of the lives of trees, reached through decasdes of careful observation and study, reveals a world so astonishing that if you read his book, I believe that forests will become magical places for you too.’

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