The Covid-19 pandemic reminds us how is nature easily accessible and close to our homes. Especially Slovenians can say we are spoiled with the diverse nature in all seasons. There is plenty of articles on how humans impact nature, but my question is: what impact nature has on us?
With the lockdown, we found out that nature is always open and more or less accessible to everyone. Nature became our gym, therapist, restaurants, bars etc. There is plenty of evidence of how we humans have impacted nature during the Covid-19 pandemic. Well, I guess most of you will firstly think about the huge amount of waste, crowded places etc. There are always two sides of the same coin: for example, many (especially guides) have been renovating hiking and mountain biking trails and the touristic infrastructure.
We usually feel the most powerful effect of nature with natural disasters. Seeing the consequences of the earthquake in Croatia at the end of 2020 reminded me how the pandemic is forgotten when nature hits. From the negative extreme to the positive one: when we reach the top of the mountain on sunrise and share our visual feelings on social media, likes and comments express gratitude and pride for nature.
The intensity of the impact depends on our closeness to nature and value that is given or taken from us. We can’t call it relationship because most of the time we are not aware how important nature is for the food we get from our garden, the warmth we get from woods, wind or sun… Nature is always here in different shapes, time and intensity.
The beauty of nature is that we never know what we will get – a sunny day or a devastating storm. We can’t complain to any institution to punish nature for what it did, the only way is to accept the situation and to find a safer way to live. The fear makes us so protective of our life that we create, make and also exaggerate with the safety measures.
And in the pandemic, many people found out how disconnected are with nature. First, it looked like people are getting back to the roots. Until the real bars, restaurants and shopping centres reopened – then nature has become again less crowded. And the cycle of life in nature repeats in the summer.