John Russell recalls his childhood in New England.

RussellJR: I grew up in Massachusetts. At that time, I was in a very small New England, typical New England town, and we were fortunate to live on a piece of property that had, oh, eight or nine acres of land. When I was a little boy, I used to like to climb trees. I could climb a pine tree and if I could get high enough, I could see the ocean from the pine tree. And the ocean was maybe about five or six miles away. So that was kind of a neat experience to see, that the world was much bigger than my little home and my little area of this little town that I grew up in.

 Finding beauty in the natural world:

JR: We’ve been very fortunate to travel to the Scandinavian countries, to Norway in particular, and to go above the Arctic Circle and to experience a climate that is so much different than what we experience here in North Carolina and probably, other than Alaska, in the United States. What makes it interesting is that because of the harshness of it and the environment, there’s not a lot of people there. And the beauty is still there to observe and to enjoy. Perhaps the more difficult places in the world to get to are still the ones that are maybe the most beautiful and the ones that will survive into the future.

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