Years back and fresh out of law school I was working a soul-numbing job as an environmental bureaucrat with the North Carolina state government, unhappy in sprawling Raleigh and yearning to breath free. Any time away from the office or my little hutch in that arid "gated community" was a blessing, but one hiking trip, to Pilot Mountain State Park in the rolling western Piedmont, put me back on course, thanks to a totemic friend I'd not seen since leaving school in New England that spring. A feature in this month's Bird Watcher's Digest tells a story of the spiritual renewal that can only be found--with effort--in the natural world.
William H. Funk
I'm a freelance writer focusing on natural history, conservation, and environmental law, policy and politics.