Green, Green, Green – a guest post by Max Buffington

brown western landscapeIn the fall of 2014, my wife and I were drawing near the end of an extended  vacation to the southwestern USA. We had driven over 5,000 miles through desert, mountains and prairie. We had viewed many beautiful landscapes, sunsets. Hiked to many natural and historical artifacts. Visited family and old friends.

Though I loved seeing American cultural treasures, I had grown consciously weary of BROWN.   BROWN was the dominant color everywhere we had traveled—brown desert sand; brown mesas; brown adobe (and faux adobe) walls, houses, buildings and mini-marts; brown prairie grasses across the Great Plains up to the very edge of the Rocky Mountains; brown cornfields; and brown dusty roads.

BROWN!!! BROWN!!! BROWN!!! UGH!

We were heading Eastward on I-68 and beginning to tick off the last 175 miles of our journey when magic began to happen.

green maryland countrysideAt the Maryland state line, we were greeted by a clear bright sky with only a handful of scattered cumulus clouds.   What better welcome home?

Little did I know that Maryland had even more in store for us?

Only a few moments later, the highway crested the first of many long, slow climbs through the Alleghenies. The crest presented us with a magnificent vista. We could see for dozens of miles in every direction from Western Pennsylvania almost to the Potomac River. There were few clouds and no haze to impede our spectacular view of forests, mountains and valleys.

What made this almost a mystical experience for me was the experience of GREEN. There was green everywhere I looked – bright green forests, emerald green fields, and dark green mountains. I swear that I expected to see green Leprechauns dancing along the road! What a truly glorious way to close a long and happy road trip – a natural green Maryland mountain high. Guest post by Max Buffington

Take-a-way: Marylanders are fortunate to have a moist climate. We are also fortunate to have a long history of people who cared about nature and the future. They worked hard to preserve land, plant trees, and take care of our open spaces. Thanks to the foresters, the park rangers, the farmers, the scientists, and all the people who continue to be good stewards of our natural resource gifts. There is a lot of work to be done by all of us to continuously save the wonders of the state for future generations.

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