Every now and then I am reminded how connected we all are to each other. After all, we all come from the same source, however you view it. We come from the same planet! And we have to look after it properly – that’s our project, and it’s clear many millions are now very occupied with this project.
Yesterday evening Sue and I took time out to visit the Glo Wild Winter Lantern Festival at Wakehurst Place in Sussex, England. Wakehurst is a Sussex outpost of the world-famous Kew Gardens, the botanical research centre at Kew, West London. I have to mention here that this visit was entirely Sue’s idea, and it wasn’t until we got there that I realised what I good idea it was.
As soon as we arrived it was clear this was a massively successful event. The large car park and all the overflow car parks were full of cars, families with their kids were milling around everywhere. The event is sold out right up to December 17, the last day. It was also clear that we were among the few people who hadn’t brought their kids! But we’re all kids at heart anyway.
Soon we were part of the happy masses, cheerfully holding our paper lantern high and sauntering through the sizeable grounds enjoying this well-presented and entertaining light show.
It is heart-warming to see so many kids enjoying themselves, getting out in the open and just – experiencing life. Great parenting, I thought. Every time I see children outdoors, at an event like this, at a Wildlife Trust, in nature, I feel hopeful for our future, because children are fundamental to solving the environmental crisis. Every time we get our children outdoors we are not only doing right by them but we are also doing a little more to reclaim the Earth.
To realise our interconnectedness is key to solving our environmental problems. Because what we do affects something or someone, somewhere else, and we are all collectively responsible for looking after our natural world and passing it on to our children, the next generation. I still remember as a teenager being amazed when a teacher told us the world was still feeling the effects of the First World War – many decades on. Until then, until he told me it had never occurred to me.
One bag of freshly made hot chestnuts later and we were on our way, traversing the beautiful windy, hilly South Downs to safety back home.