Eye Training

Sometimes I feel insane because I cannot find what I want.

 "Rockhounding" (not my favorite term) in New Mexico. Seeking interesting rocks outside of Abiquiu, NM.

"Rockhounding" (not my favorite term) in New Mexico. Seeking interesting rocks outside of Abiquiu, NM.

Not in any box store, especially not in Walmart (I go about once a year, and leave with the same awful feeling each time). Sometimes, not in any independent store. Shopping is not synonymous with seeking or finding.

I am most at home, most relaxed, most comfortable, most certain I may find what I am looking for in nature. Or, with the people I love.

It runs both ways, I can find myself outside, and terribly lonely, upset, wet, or itchy.

I can be in nature and see that something is not quite right, thought the landscape seems beautiful and photogenic. I have trained my eye in my home landscape, New Jersey, so well that I can detect overgrazed, denuded, and abused landscapes across North America. I have lost my innocence in that way. A well-traveled and restoration-inclined friend told after a cross country trip, "I went across the United States, and there wasn't a piece of land that was not used. Pastures, oil rigs..."

I can see browse lines and pipelines. I can see heavy footfall and etched tire tracks. I can see tiny bits of trash and charcoal. I can see where the fence was just as well as I can see where the fence is.

 Can you see the pipeline?

Can you see the pipeline?