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SAMSUNG CAMERA PICTURES“Salavtor ambulado” (It is solved by walking)–St. Augustine.

Coming up on my 60th birthday in a couple months, and thinking about friends who have celebrated their 60th (or 65th) by heading out on a long trek/pilgrimage. I was feeling sad that I can’t do that just now … but listening to CBC radio early this morning, a piece from Australia about World Labyrinth Day and the new labyrinth in Centennial Park in Sydney …

SAMSUNG CAMERA PICTURESWhich led my fingers walking through some googled articles on “salvator ambulado” … and I realized that I can “trek” every day, even if only for short periods at a time. After all, I live in a perfect spot … beautiful community parks, oxbows, community food forest, wild meadow, walking trail along the river channel, all within view and within a 5 minute walk of my house … and Okanagan and Skaha Lakes within 20 minute walks north and south …

SAMSUNG CAMERA PICTURESTime to stop dreaming of (or at least focusing on) ocean cabins and beach trails, and stepping out into what is right in my own backyard (including my sweet tiny backyard full of raised garden beds and a bistro set and comfy lawn chairs!). Combine that with my art supplies, camera, and beautiful new notebook … I AM going to trek … and solve … by walking, and sitting down and writing and drawing …

SAMSUNG CAMERA PICTURESThe articles I’ve been reading promise walking will help me move, get out of my box, let go, go with the flow of my imaginings, be shaken from my complacency and pride, take creative turns, live without regrets, listen, connect, feel more centered, bring clarity and peace and well-being, become reorganized and refreshed and revitalized, engage in new responses and perspectives, literally be moved forward, gain emotional and physical well-being …

SAMSUNG CAMERA PICTURESrestore resilience and focus, add mindfulness to life, stop anxiety-producing mental patterns and allow my body chemistry to return to health with stimulated circulation of nutrients, gain improved energy and mood and immune functions, push stress and tension from my mind, restore alertness, prepare for worrisome appointments or meetings, increase resourcefulness of body and brain, reduce illness and fatigue, feel better and perform better …

SAMSUNG CAMERA PICTURESreconnect with the things that are truly important in my life (spirituality, family and friends, health, writing and other creative pursuits, life-long learning and sharing), help tap into my creativity and wisdom and capacity for wonder, connect with what I really value, relax and clear my mind of jumbled and stressful thoughts, really attend to the beauty of the world around me, think deeply and efficiently, be lifted out of depression …

SAMSUNG CAMERA PICTURESbuild relationships and discover solutions and discuss life’s questions while walking with companions, become more generous and community oriented, improve my community and society by improving my own life since we are all inter-connected, force my brain to process my environment and engage it more fully, improve my cognitive performance (and stave off the horror I feel about the possibility of dementia down the road), become fitter, reconnect to my true self, personally affect climate change and other environmental factors by walking instead of driving (and cut down on personal financial costs at the same time!), hug some trees, lay on the grass and soak up the sun…

SAMSUNG CAMERA PICTURESIn one of the articles I googled, Arianna Huffington quoted a poem and then commented:

When you set out on the voyage to Ithaca,
pray that the road is long,
full of adventure, full of knowledge.
But over the years I came to realize that a journey — one that can also be full of adventure and knowledge — doesn’t have to involve planes and cars and passports. The benefits of a journey are always available simply by walking.

SAMSUNG CAMERA PICTURESMaybe someday I’ll take a long trek like my friend Yasmin John-Thorpe did for her 60th when she  trekked the Camino or as my friend Robin Edgar-Haworth is doing right now as he treks across Canada to Ottawa seeking to Right the Wrong

SAMSUNG CAMERA PICTURESBut right now, I can get up from my easy chair, put down my laptop, put on my walking shoes, put my backpack of journal and camera and sketchbook over my shoulder, and step out the door, wander through my little garden, and out into my neighborhood …



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