Tag Archive | 2011

Impromptu Nature Hike

I’ve been told that I “walk with purpose.”  Although I think it’s mostly because I have short legs and have learned to walk fast, I am beginning to believe that every hike/walk I go on, does serve some purpose.  Even if it’s something as trivial as the purpose of my impromptu hike today–to work off the Mexican food I ate for lunch.  I had a great lunch with a old friend, but I needed fresh air and exercise to feel better about my lunch choice.

Because it was an impromptu hike, I wasn’t prepared at all.  Luckily I found a fleece in the car, I was already wearing jeans and semi-athletic shoes (Sketchers) and had my camera phone.  It was chilly, with hardly any sun, but Fall is my favorite time of year and why make excuses?  It’s time to enjoy the colors as much as possible, and work off this food!

This Community park was blazed great, and I had a portable map on my phone in case I got lost again. Which I did, sort of, but that was because I wasn’t paying enough attention to the blazes.  In the past, my mind has always raced, thinking about the errands I need to do, making mental checklists in my head or reliving stressful conversations or situations.  Now, I’m jobless, which gives me a whole different set of anxieties, worries and problems.  I have feelings of guilt to contend with as well as questions about my role in the world and purpose of my life.  My normal coping mechanism is spinning at the gym.  But that can get too repetitive  which is why hiking is so good for me.  Every hike is different and I find myself completely calm, and undisturbed walking through the woods.

I get distracted listening to birds, looking at the cool trees and today, which is why I found myself on the purple trail today, when I was supposed to be on the green.  I laughed, turned around and got back on the right path.  And I’m glad I did.

This hike turned into one of the most beautiful hikes I’ve ever taken.  I found myself in a gorge, orange and leaves covering the entire ground, sunlight through the trees, water trickling through.  The beauty, peace and calmness are indescribable   Even my pictures don’t reflect how gorgeous it was.  I even found a little waterfall with a picnic table.  Next time, I’m bringing my lunch and a book.

As I walked through the gorge, I heard my second favorite sound, shoes stepping through leaves on the ground. The swish-crunch, swish-crunch, swish-crunch.  I couldn’t get enough of it today.

Not long after the hike I found myself in a grocery store parking lot, dodging pedestrians, and thinking about everything I needed.  How quickly my quiet and calm demeanor diminished, and it turned into just another day in the city.  Ah well, luckily, there are many more forests I have yet to explore.


Notes from wandering aimlessly for more than 40 years...

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