Walking Meditation
Joye Winey, Guest Blogger

I was working in my yard one day when a car pulled into my driveway. The driver rolled down her window and said “You’re that lady who walks !!”

I am.

And, I have always been. Walking has been my go-to exercise and meditation since I can remember. Today as an Octogenarian with asthma, an iffy knee, and bone issues, I walk daily, for one hour. It is a very rare day that I miss. I plan my day around my walk. I walk any time of the day that works for me, early morning or early evening when I have other obligations. I need light and fresh air so I walk outside — in the rain, the snow, below zero and 90 degrees. I walk inside when there is ice.

I dress for the weather. My full-length raspberry down coat stands out against the snow. I love having my nose and cheeks cold and on hot days, I take the best shower after. I hang on to my straw hat in the wind.

I am fortunate to live where traffic is light, near a small manmade lake. I walk in the same area but take different routes.

I note the trees flowering in the spring, different ones turning autumn orange; the farmers planting or harvesting; turtles sunning on the rocks, and eagles flying over.  I delight in the blue heron on the bank; a mink or muskrat swimming by; geese honking or ducklings trying to keep up with Mom.  Rushing water over the spillway after heavy rain and sunrises and sunsets elicit a” Wow!” each time I experience them. Clouds or brilliant blue skies and lately, roofers doing their acrobatic dance in silhouette on someone’s new roof at dusk capture my attention.

These are some of the things that catch my eyes and ears as I walk. I have found coins sometimes. Once a tiny dinosaur for my grandson. And lately, a collection of roofing nails that  I pick up so my neighbors’ tires won’t. Each day brings new surprises. I always return home refreshed and energized for the next task. I sleep well and have managed to keep mostly positive during this unsettling year. When deep ice comes, I no longer walk outside. In past years I have done that walking at a local medical facility. I don’t know if they will allow me to do that this year. If not, I will find somewhere else.

But walk I will. And lastly, I walk because, blessedly, I can.