Granny Anna: Papa TRI’s Inspiration
We have a lot of solutions that are already present across the planet, but I think at the heart of this is a deepening sense of awe and wonder at the beauty and infinitely astounding complexity in which we live. What is required is the intrinsic value of nature Is known to all of us from a child to adult through a window of wonder. That’s what we need more than anything.
– Mary Evelyn Tucker
This quote makes me think of my granny. Anna lived on a farm in the middle of nowhere on the Canadian prairies. Etched in my mind is a picture of her with her ancient blue dress on, wearing my late grandpa’s plaid lumberjack shirt as a jacket, standing in her veggie garden with a grin as big as the Manitoba sky sweeping across her face. There she would stand, surrounded by giant sunflowers and giggling at the stories that the chickadees and barn swallows would tell her with their cheerful chirps and antics as they swirled around her in that sacred space. She stayed out there on the farm by herself during her last decade on Earth, connecting with nature through that ‘window of wonder’ until she was 94 years old.
I have another memory of my granny that must have been buried deep in my subconscious when our family started TRI Handkerchiefs. It was 1978, I was 10 years old, visiting granny for the summer holidays, and I caught a nasty cold. My nose wouldn’t stop running and the trash bin was filling up with tissues from my non-stop blowing. Granny, who never shared anything but gentle kindness, hugs, and smiles with me suddenly became very stern when she saw the pile of waste I had created. It was the only time I would ever see her angry, and with her wagging finger she introduced me to the concept of using a handkerchief.
When we’re seeing the natural world through that wonder-filled lens like Anna did, we become awakened not just to its beauty, but also to its vulnerability. This realization leads us to make wiser decisions about how we consume. Doesn’t it feel like there’s a growing number of humans reaching this awareness these days? Might these masses grow so large that we will begin to celebrate the Earth’s resiliency even more than we currently fret about its vulnerability?
Let’s resolve to step into a forest this Earth Day and see those beautiful towering trees through a window of awe and wonder.