Water’s Good for the Soul (Photo Post)

Attached above is a picture I took of the sunset while enjoying a picnic with some French friends on the river Seine. I remember thinking when I first got to Paris, that I wasn’t sure I could live somewhere so devoid of natural spaces to enjoy. Yes, there are ample parks, but surely it couldn’t compare to my home in Virginia. However, to my surprise, it was the Seine that provided me comfort and soothed some intermittent waves of homesickness – now it’s no Potomac, but it’ll do. I’ve always known green space to put me at ease, so this preference for the river over parks was unexpected. But nevertheless, it was my near daily walks on the Seine that brought me peace this summer. I found a study that looked into the effects of the visibility of “green space” versus “blue space” on psychological distress in Wellington, New Zealand. The results of the study corroborate my individual experience, as they found that residential exposure to visible “blue space” was associated with lower levels of psychological distress.

Nutsford, D., Pearson, A. L., Kingham, S., & Reitsma, F. (2016). Residential exposure to visible blue space (but not green space) associated with lower psychological distress in a capital city. Health and Place, 39. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.healthplace.2016.03.002

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