I wouldn't honestly call myself antisocial. But I will admit that when large numbers of strangers are involved I plan on finding myself a quiet hideaway far from other people so that I can recharge. I am not sure what power of the universe to thank for the amazing group of people that I get to share my experience on Heron Island with.
I guess it makes sense that a common interest would bring us together and unite us in instant comradery. We all were drawn to this place because of our love for nature, our intrigue for the mysteries of ocean life and a sense of adventure. I recall feeling a similar anxiety when I joined the UCC last summer. A completely unnecessary anxiety. Working for wildland conservation tends to appeal to some of the most unselfish, wonderfully open, and forgiving souls I have ever met. Similar to this group of people that willingly stranded themselves on this Island with me now.
Here I am continuously surprised by everyone around me. Never have I met such a bright group of people with such passion for the natural world. It motivates me to learn well and inspires hope that together we can help make a better future for our oceans as well as our wildlands back home.
Tonight our group went to meet a group of citizen scientists called Coral Watch who are working on keeping the Coral Reefs healthy. You could feel the sadness that the Australians felt for the future of their reefs because of a decision by their government to continue a coal plant off the coast of Gladstone. They hope that by gathering information on the health of the corals they can help make people aware of the damage that they are contributing to and inspire change. As I sat and watched the presentation I couldn't help but feel overwhelmed. I still have confidence that people will one day find a way to live in harmony with nature but I feel that it will definitely not be the same natural world we know and love today.
I find comfort in these people. Their bright ideas and passion for wild things bring me hope.