As I mentioned in the About Me section, I’m currently taking courses to get certified as a WV Master Naturalist. In the past weeks I’ve stroked a black snake, gone birdwatching, grubbed in wet soil (mud), and made some pretty great like-minded friends. The object is to become knowledgeable enough about nature to volunteer for the state in teaching others about appreciating the wonderful world around us. As part of the certification process we start volunteering as soon as opportunities present. So yesterday, I spent the day at the Cacapon State Park Nature Center manning the desk while the park naturalist lead a hike, taught kids fishing, and put on a live reptile and amphibian show. I found out it’s great fun to point out the various exhibits. It’s also a good way to spend time doing research since I’ll feature a Nature Center in my forthcoming book, currently titled “Shadow on the Mountain”. Guess where the mountain is located. I’m essentially living in my setting. How’s that for reality? Nature Centers are wonderful places to educate, not just children, but adults. We had quite a few and they were just as interested in seeing the rattlesnake as the kids. Pity the snake doesn’t feel the same way about people. By the way, Happy Summer Solstice!