Yesterday’s numbers: 3.77 miles, 68 minutes, 58 degrees, 3 deer, 1 squirrel, 1 snake, 1 squished frog, 2 turtles, 13 dogs, 17 bikes, 22 children, and 137 good mornings which included 110 similar responses, 54 smiles, 7 grunts and 3 refrainments.
As I make my way along the greenway, I greet each person the same way as we pass each other with a sincere and friendly “good morning”. I do it whether they can see me or hear me or not and I do it whether they say it back or not! It’s my way of spreading a little sunshine and sending a little positive energy their way. These morning walks have become my happy place and I cherish every single walk along this well-travelled boardwalk. I am the self proclaimed Mayor of The Greenway and I will shake your hand and kiss your baby if you’ll let me!
There are Rituals…personally, I park in the same spot. I stretch against the same place, along the same brick wall. I cue the same app. I start and stop at the same point. This regular routine is comforting, all part of the process. I can’t help but notice other people do it too, in their own way, under their own terms.
There are Comfort Zones…obviously, mine are wide open. I smile, I engage, I look you in the eye. Others, not so much. While I won’t go out of my way to encroach on their personal space or comfort levels, again, I can’t help but notice that other people are willing to publicly be public only so much, in their own way, under their own terms.
There is a bounty of Flora and Fauna, Nature at its finest…trees, turtles, mushrooms, flowers, frogs, vines, leaves, swamps, cattails, birds, squirrels, deer, fresh air, sunshine, sights, smells, sounds galore! So much wonder, beauty and awe in one place is utterly intoxicating!
There are Characters…regulars even. I recognize and pay homage to those that drink daily from this well. There are the moms escaping from their grind to vent or gossip, couples who either talk too much or not at all as they stroll, weekend warriors earnestly plowing through unseen hurdles, teenagers basking in their youthful vigor, and the elderly and infirmed proving that walks are worth taking and life is worth living.
There are Rules…keep to the right, pass on the left, offer a hardy “On your left!” when passing, ESPECIALLY if you are riding a bicycle. Keep your dog on a leash and pick up their poop. Don’t litter, there’s trash cans for that. If you find something left behind, place in a conspicuous spot so perhaps its owner can retrieve it later. Stay on the path, don’t blaze a new one. Keep your eyes wide open, and your momentum moving forward.
This is my Happy Place! If you’re lucky enough to have one of your own then you can appreciate how priceless this time and place is to me. If you don’t, I suggest you get one. For it is in these moments that I find myself again. I am allowed to breathe, let go, reboot, spread my wings and recommit.
Good morning. Good morning indeed!