Recently I had the pleasure of visiting a small man-made lake in Poughkeepsie New York. Normally I’d be pretty unimpressed by such a lake but this particular one has a history; a personal history. Erin’s history is tied up with this lake. It was Morgan lake where as a young girl my girlfriend went with her father. It was at Morgan lake where Erin fished with her dad, it was there that she observed wild swans. Morgan lake is actually the first place I saw wild swans (at least white swans, I saw black swans in Tasmania). When Erin was a child though, she not only saw adult swans, she named them Bob and Melissa. Erin saw their nests and watched the goslings after they hatched.
It was at Morgan lake where Erin first understood that fishing could mean killing fish and this inspired her to become a vegetarian (although she isn’t one now). It was a beautiful little lake but not incredibly impressive but to me it suggests the power even a little exposure to the beauty of nature can have. It was perhaps the time at Morgan Lake that made Erin study conservation biology which is what lead to her and I meeting in Madagascar. I think even the smallest natural area can connect with us on a deep level and should be valued very highly. Even if it’s just a small city park, enjoy what’s right next door to you; it doesn’t have to be Siberia or the Serengeti.