Living on a small farm, I am plagued with endless to-do lists. As I try to recall the demand of spring projects, somehow the fall seems even more crammed with immediate needs and wants. Of course the needs of putting up firewood, storm windows, garden harvesting, storing winter hay, and boat decommissioning should theoretically out-weigh the wants of one more sail, a quick camping trip, and a scenic foliage hike or two.
Some days I wonder what life would be like living in the confines of a tide pool. Is life simpler there for those tiny critters? Is a literal snail’s pace a lovely thing? Maybe periwinkles are disappointed with their lack of speed. Does a limpet ever feel stressed out? Do crabs seem like massive, terrifying monsters to the other critters, or just weird neighbors?
Here is what I would like to pretend as my to-do list if I were a periwinkle:
1. Eat algae
2. Notice tide going out
3. Move down the rock a couple inches
4. Eat algae
5. Notice tide coming in (brrrr!)
6. Move up the rock a couple inches (but only if I feel motivated)
7. Eat algae
One of the reasons I love tide pooling in summer is to help me discover the beauty of a seemingly slower lifestyle. Kids love discovering what is under the next small rock, and there are magnificent qualities to discover in nature’s small creatures.
I prefer to imagine that a less hurried life does not equate to a boring life.