Saturday, April 19, 2003

For Geoff, because I love him.

We went on an evening walk and discovered some new trails and sights. The trail we followed starts parallel with a driving range. On our right we saw egrets, ducks, marsh and hills, we heard many birds, crickets and frogs. To our left were the double fences of the golf center. About half way through the walk I saw a golf ball alongside the path, and for the rest of the walk we enjoyed something of a hunt, finding golf balls under sage and fennel, and nestled like Easter eggs among the purple lupines. Max found several, but didn't care to keep any. Alex collected about twenty, and William had at least a dozen golf balls stuffed in his pockets. As we turned around to get back to our car, the sun was setting. The frogs sang louder and the birds began to rush home to their trees and nests. Crossing a bridge over a swift little creek we paused to watch the bats darting and flitting. The bats are amazing. They slip right by the top of your head and you can feel the air move as their wings beat, but they never actually touch. One moment they are visible and quite real, but they disappear in to the settling darkness, and all that remains is the subtlety of knowing we are part of something greater than ourselves.

I think it would be wonderful if everyone could enjoy an evening walk, discover little treasures, notice the color of the mud and the foot prints of those who came through before. There is a great deal of grief and anguish in the world and there are problems that seem to have no possible solution. There are bigger wishes I could make, and certainly I have higher hopes, but I think it would be very good if everyone stepped outside and listened to the water flowing, waves crashing, wind blowing through trees or birds calling, if everyone could jump over puddles, smell herbs crushed between their fingers, taste honeysuckle, watch for frogs, feel no alarm or pain, make no judgments. On our walk we sometimes had to slow down for our little one to keep up, and sometimes we ran, because running is fun. And we met a woman, small and quite old; she pushed her own wheel chair and made her own pace. We were sharing the path, the air and the calm. Without even touching, I think we can stroll passed one another and feel the air move, and perhaps this might make a difference, ease some of the suffering. It would be wonderful if everyone of us could enjoy such simple pleasures.

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