Stranger to guest to family
When many people first head out into the wilderness, they feel like a stranger in a strange land. Out of their comfort zone. Odd sounds, weird smells, too hot, too cold, too wet, too…… well………you get the picture. The first time may prove to be the last.
For those that persevere and in doing so learn to accept the natural world on its own terms, a transformation can take place. Slowly but surely one becomes accustomed to the conditions that hitherto had been the catalyst of fear and anxiety. This heightened sense of connection brings with it a magnified feeling of responsibility. An unwritten ‘duty of care’ with Mother Nature. The stranger has become a guest. What was once foreign, has begun to feel familiar.
In the third and final stage of this “natural progression”, the wayfarer goes from being a guest to a family member. Wildlife seems less skittish in your presence and navigating obstacles such as river fords, desert crossings and snowbound terrain becomes a matter of course. You know what needs to be done and you do it. Experience and instinct have fused. Feelings of separation have disappeared, replaced instead by a sense of union with the natural world.