Stressed by the pandemic? Get outside

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Spring is in the air, the birds are singing and flowers are blooming.   We are being told to avoid gathering with other people so what can we do to keep our sanity?   One way is to get outside, in your backyard pulling weeds, taking care of your plants, enjoying the night sky and going for a walk in nature.

Over the past week I have spent time enjoying the beautiful Mexican poppies in Northeast El Paso and exploring Franklin Mountains State Park.   Beauty is everywhere if you will just go out and find it.

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So far most parks and natural areas are open, but I suggest if you go somewhere you stay close to home.   I say close to home because of a Facebook post I saw yesterday from my friend Marcos who lives just outside Big Bend National Park.   He makes some good points about the stress those who provide visitor services are worried about.  Here is what he said in entirety:

To Brewster County Judge Cano and Robert Álvarez (Executive Director Visit Big Bend):

I am writing to ask you to consider suspending promotion of additional tourism to the Big Bend. On the contrary we should be sending a message to the public that this is not the best time to visit Big Bend. During this period when we are all trying to minimize our social contacts we do not need to be encouraging additional visitation to the Big Bend. These visitors present an increased risk for our community at a time when people should be encouraged to stay home and minimize the spread of covid -19. The increased visitation also creates a greater demand for the limited resources we have available to us down here. I believe that both the tourism council, and the Emergency Services District should be exploring how they can provide assistance to this community during this difficult time. Thank you for considering our recommendations for those of us living down here.

Marcos Paredes
Cc Bob Krumenaker NPS

 

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