Good Life Tour of the Florida Museum of Natural History Amanda Wasoff

Nature on Display: One of the exhibits in the Butterfly Garden that I found very interesting was the portion about the life cycle of various butterflies. The one in the picture above is a North American species during the Spring. The exhibit showed different butterflies who populate different continents in the varying seasons of their life cycles. This exhibit was a more intriguing medium to learn about this because I usually learn about life cycles and geography in textbooks. Seeing the actual insects and the flora that they use to survive was something that really brought nature right in front of my eyes. My favorite part of the exhibit was the fact that it allowed me to focus on nature instead of school or social issues or all the other things college students deal with. It was an interesting escape from my everyday reality.
Nature and Ethics: The FNHM allowed me to experience nature in an up close and inclusive setting. In the gardens I was surrounded by beautiful insects, colorful plants, and chirping birds. Around me, there were families and children simply fascinated by everything that this exhibit had to offer. I got to speak to a museum worker and she told me about her views on the importance of allowing students and families direct access to something like this - she said that without nature, civilization doesn't exist. So by protecting, respecting, and immersing ourselves in it, we are ensuring our future. I have always felt that ecological conservation and protecting the planet are the most important things in the world. If we destroy the earth, we destroy ourselves. Exhibits like this make me question why we prioritize the construction of one apartment complex over the existence of thousands of unique and vital organisms.
Nature and the Human Spirit: The Florida Natural History Museum inspires me to step back from my daily life and immerse myself in nature. When I was living at home, I was able to go to the beach, the park, and the woods whenever I wanted. Not to say that my dorm room, my sorority house, or Turlington Plaza aren't the most soothing places in the world, but there is something about being outdoors and that truly revives people. Nature allows us to take the simplest things and find the extraordinary within them. Take the ocean for example, we live on a state surrounded by it - you are never more than 2 hours away from the sea and the sand; however although we take that for granted, the ocean holds some of the deepest secrets in the world. As humans, especially living in a suburban area, we often see trivial matters as the end of the world - but when we are in nature, when we are at home, we are reminded of just how small yet big the world is and how every animal and plant plays a vital role in the function of our lives.

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