Tuesday, May 8, 2007
I've edited my revised New Year's Resolution. No more walking in circles around a track, wondering, "Is this lap seven or eight?" No more walking on a treadmill, going for miles and ending up where I started.
Yesterday I went for a walk-- for exercise-- that turned out to be such pure pleasure I wondered why I hadn't figured this out before. Why walk for exercise when you can walk for the sheer pleasure of it?
I guess I knew in my heart of hearts this was the way to go, and I'm sure others are ahead of me in making this discovery, but sometimes I'm too busy for pleasure. There is so much to do, so much that absolutely *has* to be done. And when it is done I find my pleasure in a dish of ice cream, or a nap, or both.
I intended to do the minimum-- walk for thirty minutes. I ended up walking for over an hour, and finished happier and more refreshed than if I'd done the "for exercise purposes only" walk.
Beside a road leading through the college campus, I found the entrance to a series of woodland trails I hadn't known existed. I followed a path keeping my "exercise" pace, but I also paused, to take pictures, to listen to the birds, to smell the woodsy scent, to inspect life in miniature moss.
I had my camera. There were pictures everywhere. Vivid bluebirds flitted, landed, and flitted again. A hawk soared, the biggest I've ever seen. Sun cast picket fence shadows through trees.
I continued, sometimes lost, sometimes sure of where I would come out, content to be alone soaking in the beauty.
The trail hooked right and opened into a clearing, a bluff overlooking a large empty parking lot. I looked down on a human scene as beautiful as any in nature. Below me college students were playing baseball.
Watching for awhile, I felt I'd stumbled across a prize, an endangered species of sorts-- college kids, playing, laughing, having plain old fashioned fun. They spotted me and waved. A rare species I hope I see more of.
See: Renewing My Vows (revising a New Year's Resolution)