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Thursday, June 16, 2011


Tonight, leaving work at 6:30, I was struck with contentment as I walked out the door into the evening sunshine. It was so warm and beautiful! Looking forward to my bike ride home, I set out. Then I noticed something:

flat tire

A flat tire! Darn it! And I just had a big bike tune-up last week....

Then I stopped myself. On my morning ride to work, I had been contemplating the power of choice to reframe a moment, a situation, our lives. Here it was.

I love, love, love to walk. When I was in high school and college, one of my favorite things to do was to set out on a long, long walk, often without a destination, either alone or with a friend. So relaxing. So slow (though I do walk quickly). So enjoyably human-paced.

So I happily set off. I was grateful to be wearing these shoes:

Paris shoes

I call them my Paris shoes. Maybe a story for another day, but on a weekend visit to Paris with Minou in 2009, I decided that I wanted to walk everywhere. There was so much to see, and I wanted to do all our transportation above-ground. Human-paced. See, I told you that I love to walk! About 2 hours after we arrived, the one pair of shoes that I had brought, strappy sandals chosen completely because of vanity, broke apart in the Jardin de Luxembourg. I bought these ones above in a shoe stall just outside for 12 euros, and probably walked the equivalent of a marathon in them over the next two days. The salesman was right, they are flexible and comfortable.

They also gave me horrific blisters during that first walking trip in Paris!
So my first thought today was...

I am grateful that these shoes are broken in and won't give me blisters.
I feel my heels striking the ground and I'm grateful for the contact with the earth. Happy my bones get stronger too. I'm grateful for these legs that walk, and lungs that help me....I choose to love this moment.

It helped that the evening was gorgeous. I knew that no-one needed me at home, so I could take my time. Nature was calling in more ways than one, my only concern. The first part of the walk was a little industrial...

flakeboard factory

But I was soon past that part. I tried to appreciate something about each area I passed, not wish myself past it. And I noticed some things I might not have seen:

interesting grasses

Next I came to a wetlands nature preserve area, where I was resourceful and thankfully found a Porta-Potty. And some beautiful scenery:

old oak

Then wended my way home. More sights along the bike path:

red grasses

wild daisies

wild critter--see it?

I walked 6.5 miles (10.5 km), taking about 2 hours. The sun was lower and the air was cooler by the time I arrived. The dog was so happy to see me. Now I am home, and so grateful to be resting and tired and feeling peaceful.

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