Brrrrrrr-ding ’round the world

Posted: February 21, 2012 in Health, Nature
Tags: , , , , ,

Sunday afternoon. The sun’s shining, giving the illusion that it’s warm outside. My husband’s at work and I decide to combine business with pleasure by taking a walk for exercise (which I both like and is good for me) and the joy of being outside on a sunny winter day.

I pull out my Nano, a Christmas gift of some years ago, chosen by our younger daughter, prepare to put on my walking shoes and my phone rings. I talk to our older daughter, on her way home from weekend grad school from which, after two years of weekends, she’ll have her MBA. I hang up, put on my shoes and my phone rings. Our younger daughter, asking where a food item is (she’s six hours east of me.) My mind soars from Naperville to Cleveland, heads downstairs to the panty, locates the pasta and then lets her go down to fetch it. I put on my reading glasses, select a podcast, put in my ear buds, take off my reading glass, put on my dark glasses (looking chic, now), open the garage door…and my Nano dies. Drat! Forgot to charge it again or rather, let it sit too long, even turned off. Evidently doing nothing takes energy, too. Take out my ear buds, unlock the door, attach the Nano for charging and finally leave.

I walk a block from the house and start around the lake that sits between our housing area and a main road. For all that, it feels like being away from the houses, in a small nature bubble. I walk quickly. There are some dried milkweed pods on tall stalks, rising above the other dead, brown plants. On the lake are two ice continents, one Greenland to the other’s Australia. Greenland is populated by geese, walking carefully across the ice. On the land between the lake and the road, another large gaggle walks, pecks and occasionally honks. They’ve already left droppings on the paved path but I’m sure there are more in the grass. Periodically, a small group of land geese head for either the open water at the end and edges of the lake or some do the same in reverse.

As I walk farther, I see, at the edge of Australia, a few seagulls, fighting over a large piece of what appears to be sushi from the open water. The seagulls are more active, both flying more and fishing. Further on, past the weeping willow with its hanging brown strands are some ducks, looking amazingly like the rocks around which they’re swimming and being an excellent advertisement, as are the geese, for the insulating qualities of down. I love to see ducks upend themselves while eating, keeping their heads underwater for amazing amounts of time. The ducks stay mostly at the far end of Australia, away from the seagulls. Around the edges of the ice continents are narrow waterways with wind-whipped waves hurrying along.

I make the round-the-world trip twice, warm when walking one way, the wind behind me and the sun feeling good. As soon as I round the far end of the lake, the Australia end, the wind is in my face, the sun behind my back not as strong. The tops of my ears get cold and the gloves go back on. But it’s exhilarating and I’m glad I came, sharing the sun and cold with the birds.

  1. christopher otten says:

    I had a walk just like this on Monday. My iPhone didn’t “die” however. So I could utilize it’s iPod function.
    Ducks. Birds. Butterflies. It was delightful. And the…
    Palm trees
    80 degrees
    Are you sure Bill can’t telecommute from someone place warm? 😉

    • Sounds lovely, but I don’t think it would work right now. I’ll have to continue to enjoy the cold and look forward to spring…and maybe a visit down south one of these days. I did enjoy the sunshine in Arizona for two weeks in January. 🙂

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