Thursday, June 9, 2011

So I Went For a Walk

So I went for a walk. My mind needed clearing and my body needed motion. And, above all else, I needed to get away from anything electronic.

Except, of course, my phone, which is slowly turning me into a Borg.

My husband, however, would beg to differ. Ever since I upgraded to a smartphone, he thinks the transition to half-human, half-machine occurred almost instantaneously.

But I went outside, in the heat, under the sun, contemplating all sorts of things in an effort to clear my mind. Things such as the electronic cloud where more and more of our data is landing. Clouds used to mean something that brought rain and blocked sun, cooling the air on days such as this. But now, it means something I can’t see, leaving me wondering what exactly this “cloud” is.

Then I reminded myself why I went for a walk. It was to get away from such things and focus on what is around me. Including thick piles of mulch at the base of perfectly aligned trees, stepping a little farther out from them, crossing fingers that nothing would hiss and slither as I pass by. Up on a small hill sat a bunny, staring at me from the gentle shade, then turning, cotton tail waving goodbye as he hopped away.

Then I thought of how I wanted to get home, sit under this laptop and type something about him.

But I caught myself and recalled that the point of this walk is the walk, itself. To be outside, even June’s heat that feels borrowed from some future day in July.

Walking past a neighbor’s yard, I took a moment to slow down and look down. Age makes it harder to keep up with things, and budgets make it hard to enlist others to maintain your lawn, when mind and muscle lack the strength and energy of earlier days. Thinking to myself how others around me have complained about spaces like these, even when mown, I took a moment, looked and recalled walks and hikes by fields mixed will all sorts of greenery. And I smiled and wondered, what makes something a weed, yet another a flower?

And I continued to recall days spent outdoors, when indoors wasn’t where I wanted to be. And how things in my daughter’s generation are so dependent on electronics, and how we’ve somehow allowed that to strip us of even a tiny bit of our connection with nature, and I felt a tinge of sadness.

So, I went for a walk, and I returned to my home a little more resolved to spend this summer connected more to nature than my computer.

Or even my phone.

Do you ever feel the same?

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