Watching a webworm as it munched away on leaves was one of the most memorable experiences of my journey. It wasn’t that webworms are an endangered species (because they’re not) or that getting to see them eat a rare phenomenon (it’s not). It was just because seeing a little creature that possessed so few if anything at all, carrying on its business so contently, quite something. I watched as the webworm continued to eat its leaves, then I continued to wander my planet.
A tiny tint of blue zipped through the air, catching my attention. Ah, a damselfly! The little creature cast a few cautious look around as it settled down next to me under the cool shades of a tree. What an elegant creature I thought as we spent a few minutes together on that calm summer afternoon. Then, it gently took off into the air and drifted away. I remained for a second longer, happy to have had such great company.
Dashed left and right in the water, tidepool sculpins tried hard to conceal themselves from the curious primate towering over their home. Some hid under rocks, some under seaweeds, but one sculpin chose the right boot of mine as its hideout. I reached down for a photo, hoping that the little fella would not dart away. The sculpin stayed put, but it was very difficult to spot for its skin blended perfectly with the sand around. I thanked the little fella for the picture and we parted ways.
The encounters with these smaller, more common and less loved creatures of the wild are special. Their unique beauty brings joy to the soul and just like other animals, their simpler way of life is something quite brilliant and admirable. Brilliant because they are so content with the bare minimum. Admirable because the struggle for survival that they go through is no less terrifying or intense compared any other living beings on this planet. All one must do to find them is to stop for a moment, and look around.