“Nature is impersonal, awe-inspiring, elegant, eternal. It’s geometrically perfect. It’s tiny and gigantic. You can travel far to be in a beautiful natural setting, or you can observe it in your backyard – or, in my case, in the trees lining New York City sidewalks, or in the clouds above skyscrapers.” ~ Gretchen Rubin
A simple quote this one, and yet it resonates.
As a city girl, I am used to living in a bustling metropolis; a densely built up urban space full of buildings and people and noise! But at the same time I have a deep appreciation for nature, and the awe-inspiring beauty of the natural world. I have travelled far to see it – to Africa and South America, to the Antarctic, to the Galapagos Islands, where I have wondered at some of the world’s most incredible flora and fauna. But I also take great joy in the beauty of flowers (and even the weeds) in my back garden and allotment. And if there’s a botanical garden anywhere I’m visiting, I am absolutely drawn to visit it. Even taking a walk in any local park is a moment of real joy; there’s something very replenishing about being in the presence of trees…
Taipei is one of the ugliest cities I’ve ever visited (on a purely aesthetic level) and yet I utterly loved it. There was something wonderfully warm, welcoming and fascinating about this city of food-lovers that really stole my heart. Although we took a larger dose of nature during our visit to Taiwan’s Taroko Gorge National Park, one of the highlights of our five night visit to the country was a half-day trip out of Taipei to the nearby mountain village of Maokong, known for its tea production. The views over city and forest from the cable car were a delight!
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