Where the Path May Lead


     There’s an elderly woman who lives a few houses down from me.  She appears to be about 85, short, stout, full of energy.  Today on what felt like one of the coldest in February, 20 degrees with a wind chill of 19 mph, our paths crossed while walking. We greeted one another with an enthusiastic “Hello how are you!” 
     She quickly replied, “As long as we’re able to walk, we’re doing okay.”
     We continued in our opposite directions, tugging at our collars and burying our hands deep within our coat pockets.  Even with the wall-to-wall sunshine the cold temperatures quickened my pace. And just like that, her one sentence stuck in my mind all the way home because I knew there were times when I could not walk.  Flu has kept me flat on my back twice; infrequent bouts of vertigo; oral surgeries, assorted viruses; migraines; and more recently a fractured ankle.  From this list you may think, “This lady isn’t so well.”
     On the contrary, I consider my overall good health as a blessing.  My walking feet have served me for years. Going to from work 4 miles each way when I didn’t have transportation; walking in a blizzard to attend a memorial service 5 miles round trip; enjoying a stroll on a stretch of beach; regularly meeting friends for what we call a “walk-and-talk”; Walk like M.A.D.D. fund raiser; once walked across an icy expanse to assist a frail woman to safety, walked down the aisle; walked my child to school; walking through a museum; hiking in the woods; and these days plenty of walking while at work in the library. The walking list travels as many miles as I have.
     Where have you walked today?  I never heard anyone regret when they took a walk.  

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