As we crossed over the muddy field on the Brecon Beacon trail in Wales, the sun began to warm our hands and dry out our clothes. My face became hot and my cheeks became puffy, which often happens to me while I’m hiking and it turns from cold to warm. One of the students shouts, “Look, there’s a rainbow!” I turn to my right and see this amazing rainbow. Of course in the picture it’s not as bright and vibrant. This rainbow stayed with us for about a mile and we climbed the hill. When we turned around to look back at it, we could see the end of the rainbow, where it almost met the ground.
Perhaps one of the most interesting things about this moment in the modern age, is that no one wanted to take a picture. I’m standing with 12 teenagers on a mountain, and no one suggests getting a picture, we all just look at it and begin to talk about leprechauns, belief in the supernatural, cultural differences around spirituality, and physics of light.
This was not the only moment on my four day backpacking adventure that gave me hope for the future of humanity. I hear over and over again, “Kids today ______.” (Spend too much time on technology, don’t know how to enjoy the outdoors, prefer virtual conversations versus real ones.) And on and on and on. But as adults, it is our responsibility to provide them with the opportunities to explore nature, unplug, put them in situations where they must talk face to face, teach them empathy and social skills. Because guess what? When we give them that opportunity they take it! Not only do they take it, they love it.
Here are some more photos from our trip on the Brecon Beacon Trail