Leading up to Giving Tuesday 2021, we are excited to present the stories of TTLT supporters and their relationships with our nature reserves. The final story that we are honoured to share is that of Lenore Patterson and her strong attachments to Bebensee Tract.
I have a very strong attachment to Bebensee Tract. It was owned by my late husband’s uncle and aunt, Lloyd and Elaine Bebensee. Although they lived in Calgary, their family roots were in Ontario, and they would come to spend time here each summer. I remember Lloyd taking my daughters and me out for hikes in the woods. He spent hours in those woods, working and exploring the area. Elaine had a love for all the wildflowers and often picked a bouquet to bring back to their Ontario home. I found their knowledge of and respect for nature to be inspirational.
After Lloyd passed away, Elaine donated 50 acres of the property to Thames Talbot Land Trust (TTLT) to honour his memory and ensure the property was preserved in its natural state. A few years later, TTLT was able to purchase the remaining 75 acres of woodlot to add to their holdings in the Skunk’s Misery area. Today, our family farms the property adjacent to Bebensee Tract. I am often in the area surrounding that parcel of land and am always grateful that the property will remain a beautiful, protected wooded area for many years to come.
There are moments when I feel our connection to nature strongly and am reminded how lucky I am to live in this natural area. My most memorable moments include when I walk into a wooded area in the spring and find a thick carpet of trilliums; when the tundra swans fly overhead, honking and reminding us that winter is almost over; when a deer crosses my path and stops to look at me for a second before he moves on; when an eagle flies directly overhead, with their stately wingspan and striking white head and tail; when I stop to take a photograph of a butterfly and they are too involved with the flowers to even notice me; and when the dense greenery of the forest provides a cool break from the hot summer sun. These moments remind me that nature is a gift to be cherished and I want to do my small part to ensure that future generations are able to experience this beauty just as we have. As a supporter of TTLT, I feel the good work that they do to protect our environment, one woodlot at a time, will lead to a better future for our next generations.
Written by Lenore Patterson
Photos by Lenore Patterson