My Journey With Nature

Shortly after I graduated college I was very fortunate to get a job at then Connell & Associates, an engineering consulting firm in Coral Gables. I was hired to work in their newly-formed environmental department. There were four of us at that time. A Vice President of the environmental department, a director, an ecologist fresh out of college like me, and me. This was truly the beginning of a great opportunity for me, to be able to work in my field of Ecology, and the environmental work turned out to be a great opportunity for the company as well. The environmental department grew steadily during my time with the company.

The work was very exciting and rewarding. Some of our work was collecting data and information that would result in an Environmental Impact statement, (EIS), or a Development of Regional Impact, (DRI) statement or more local environmental reports. Knowing that we were helping to protect the world around us and, almost daily, learning new things about the environment and the ecology of the area we were studying was certainly a bonus.

We were also involved in many special studies such as flora and fauna surveys, and endangered species studies. These were my favorite projects. Every field trip was a new opportunity to learn more about the plants or animals we were studying and their interaction with their environment. In the case of endangered species, the work entailed not only gathering information on the population size but working to understand why they became endangered and what could be done to help them flourish. Hopefully to the point that they were no longer endangered and their population would sustain and grow.

As much as I enjoyed the fieldwork, there was a fair amount of time needed in the office to compile our data, analyze it, and of course write the reports or papers. This was exciting as well. Sometimes the information gathered in the field once studied and analyzed in the office would provide a different conclusion than I originally thought it would when I was in the field.

I have many stories to share about my work as an ecologist. But today’s story is really about one time when I was in the office. The company had just gone through a major change. It was bought by another company. The process was somewhat convoluted, but when all was said and done the new company was Connel Metcalf, & Eddy. That is another story in itself.


As part of the company changes, we became more organized and efficient and there were some new people brought on board. One area that these changes took place was, believe it or not, the supply room. A new person came on board to manage the supplies. He was very knowledgeable and helpful. He was from Boston and had a thick Bostonian accent. We became good friends.

On this particular day, I was in the office writing a report and needed something from the supply room. I was looking for whatever it was at the time when Frank walked in and asked me: “What ah you lookin’ faw?” Without thinking, I said “Peace of mind, Frank, Peace of mind.” He just laughed and said, “I can’t help you theyah” and walked out of the room.

The thing is I didn’t know that I was going to say that until the words came out of my mouth. And, the thing is I meant it.

I think we are all looking for peace of mind whenever we can find it. That’s a good thing. I think that actively, deliberately being part of nature often, helps to bring us peace of mind.

“The best remedy for those who are afraid, lonely, or unhappy is to go outside, somewhere where they can be quite alone with the heavens, nature and God. Because only then does one feel that all is as it should be and that God wishes to see people happy amidst the simple beauty of nature. …I firmly believe that nature brings solace in all troubles.” — Anne Frank

69 views3 likes. Post not marked as liked3

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *