I don’t know exactly how it happened. I don’t know if the wind, a bird or some other miraculous act caused the root of a Lamb’s Ear to take hold in my driveway. All I know is I exited my car one day and there was a plant struggling to push its way through layers of compacted gravel. I did my best to watch it until it was big enough to transplant. In the meantime, the solo plant was battered and bruised by delivery trucks and vehicles belonging to family and friends. The lone Lamb’s Ear held on.
During September of 2021, I decided the lone Lamb’s Ear was large enough to move so I dug it out of the gravel and planted it in my flower garden. I mulched the plant, fed it and watered it. As I worked in my yard, the lone Lamb’s Ear was nurtured by the sun, the rain, my voice and lots of jazz music streaming through my speakers. Winter came and I mulched the lone Lamb’s Ear and fed it again.
Now it is spring of 2022 and the lone Lamb’s Ear shines above all. It lives among Bugle Weed, Irises, and Fox Gloves. It is 3 to 4 times larger than the other Lamb’s Ear in my sister’s flower garden. Though alone, it is happy among flowers unlike itself.
You will continue to hear me say that we can always look to nature to guide us as we fulfill our JEDI (Justice, Equity, Diversity and Inclusion) mission. Right now, we are in our “push through season.” Everyone will not join us immediately and some will most definitely regard our work as performative as they await the new “politically correct thing” to do. We are often overwhelmed with this most difficult work and we will be battered and bruised. However, if we continue to nurture and cultivate our mission by treating others the way we wish to be treated, we will most certainly enjoy a bountiful reward. Just think, Friends of MST can set the standard for inclusivity along all trails within our individual communities. Our communities can set the standard for inclusivity along all trails within our state and North Carolina can proudly set the standard for inclusivity along all trails within our country. Once we have reached our goal, we will have war stories and battle scars; but, seeing nature bloom in all colors among plants and humans along the MST will be worth the journey.
-Beverly A. Scarlett
If you are interested in the MST statewide JEDI Allies Network – JEDI for Justice, Equity, Diversity, Inclusion.
We are hosting an Allies orientation via Zoom in July.
The MST JEDI Allies are a statewide network building relationships that reflect the diversity of our communities and state with the goal to promote knowledge, use, and enjoyment of the trail.
Together we will:
- respectfully connect with people historically excluded from outdoor recreation
- work to make the trail more accessible to everyone
- introduce and welcome more people to the MST
As an MST JEDI Ally you may help with some of these activities:
- serve as MST JEDI representative in local area: eyes, ears, and ambassador for MST
- identify local diverse hiking and outdoor recreation groups
- build relationships with individuals within diverse communities
- introduce MST and coordinate MST hikes with diverse communities
- identify significant history and culture points on/near MST in local area
We are hosting Zoom MST JEDI ALLY orientations and hope you will join us. Zoom links will be sent closer to the time. RSVP here to attend one of these two sessions:
- Thurs July 21 – 12:00 noon – 1:00pm
- Tuesday, July 26 – 12:00 noon – 1pm
- Wed July 27 – 7:00pm – 8:00pm
Thank you. We look forward to working together!
Beverly Scarlett & Susan Hester, Co-Chairs, MST JEDI Committee