Making the transition from rural to urban is fantastic in certain ways. Cities have creativity, intelligence, style, entertainment, and most of all, humanity. However, despite the thrills of people-watching, midnight cafes, and Broadway shows, rural-to-urban moves may still cause slight depression as nature-oriented memories are replaced by concrete and traffic.
Of course, cities also have parks and occasional forests, but not all urban dwellers have this luxury. For those who don’t, recovering from urban depression may require the creation and fostering of ‘imaginary forests’ at home. These representations of nature renew the rural memories, giving a mental ‘breath of fresh air’ to adjusting urban dwellers.
These imaginary forests are easy to make. For examples, check out these twelve simple ideas:
1. Gather fallen twigs and leaves from a few neighborhood trees and make a miniature forest.
Then, walk through it vicariously with small toys.
2. Browse through forest photos
– or, in sincere desperation, use google street view to walk through national parks.
3. Invest in a terrarium.
4. Find a fallen tree branch and place it in your living room, standing against the wall.
Hang origami or glass ornaments on it.
5. Write a story set in the wilderness
– “I believe in the imagination. What I cannot see is infinitely more important than what I can see.” – Duane Michals
6. Put up wall art in the entrance of your home.
7. Clip plant or tree leaves to your wall
– for the smell.
8. Create a forest with your plates and cups.
9. Quilt a forest.
10. Use woodsy coasters.
11. Hang bark on the wall.
12. Eat mushrooms
– the earthier, the better.