Words from the Woods | ACF Blog

November | 2023

Take A Moment

by Chris Adams, ACF

I can’t think of any profession that offers such rewarding opportunities as that of a forester. We get to spend every day outside, visit new and different places daily, and encounter new experiences regularly. Now, is every day a great day? Maybe not... But I think we can all admit that it is a very fulfilling profession.

Since I started my career as a forester, there have been a lot of changes, and things have started moving at a much faster pace. In turn, we find ourselves in a hurry to get the next job done, or we are rushing to meet a deadline. Or even worse, we find ourselves running around like our heads are cut off trying to make sure that we get everything done in a day and slam it all in just a few hours.

I say all of this to say we should make sure we don't forget to slow down and take a moment to enjoy those very experiences that are our reward. This includes the people you meet and work with, maybe a view from a hillside, or those places you visit that no one else is likely to come across again. We all have many stories from our time in the woods. Even if at the time they may not have seemed worth remembering, somehow, they creep back into our thoughts and put a smile on our face.

One story that kind of sticks out to me is on a very hot and humid East Texas day when I was cruising timber. Walking through the woods, I began to get a little hungry. I rarely stop to eat on those types of days, but for some reason, I did. Right before I decided to sit down, I walked through a spider web. Now, typically I would not give that another thought, but that day, as I watched that spider begin gathering up the mess I had just made and started rebuilding its web, I'll tell you, it was well orchestrated, and that spider got a lot done in a short amount of time.

I will admit that experience did not change my trajectory through the woods moving forward, but my point is that I took a moment instead of thinking, ‘I have to hurry up and get that next plot done’ or ‘I have to flag the rest of that line’ or ‘I should rush over here and meet this landowner or that landowner.’ Those are all very important things because they are part of our job, but at the end of the day, we can't forget to take a moment.

Now I only have 25 years in this profession, which to me seems like a lot, but I know to some of you that may read this, it's only half a career. Time flies, and one day those moments (good or bad) will be all we have to reflect on. I hope you remember to take a moment!