Enjoying the Fall Forest
What do I think of when fall comes? I imagine the abundance of the forest coming alive. I think of acorns falling from the trees and kids laughing as they race to pick them up. I make plans to continue my annual search for the elusive nut of the California Nutmeg, hoping even a single nut will finally reach my taste buds. I remind myself to return to the creek where I first tasted the delicious kalmata olive-like flavor of our local Blackfruit Dogwood. As I gather resin-covered Yerba Santa, I wonder at how a forgotten roadside plant, can effectively, without needing any healthcare dollars, decongest a winter cold. I look forward to November, when I will search high above the mature branches of the orange-red Madrone tree, for a delicious Sierra Nevada fruit, filled with three times more antioxidants than a blueberry or pomegranate. I think of how much I don’t know and wish I could rewrite history and show reverence for the native people of this land that knew how to live here in sustainable abundance. This fall, instead of staring into a screen, I remember to go outside and let the wild in.
– Alicia Funk, Co-Author, Living Wild