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A Morning Walk

Early mornings have slowly become a friend of mine, though I've never been one to seek them out if I could possibly help it. But sure as summer's heat steadily marches toward its peak each year, it seems I am forced out of the house earlier and earlier to avoid the risk of heat exhaustion during my daily stroll. As I tie my laces and creak open the door, First Light greets me…we're actually pretty chummy by this point.

The air is crisp today, hinting of the season change chugging swiftly 'round the bend in our direction.

Cicadas are busy warming up. Just a soft, sleepy hummmm in the air - nothing like their deafening mid-day chorus. There is heavy dew on the blades of grass, and the sky is still faint shades of pink and purple. Late summer wildflowers seem to be shooting up alongside the road all of a sudden…ready for their time to shine. The sun glistens off of fresh-hung spider webs.

I walk through slivers of sunlight dancing through a wood of tall pine trees. It reminds me of up north where I'm from. Around one particular corner I swear the air smells of Lapsang tea. It's absolute heaven! Mossy pine, wet earth, smokey firewood…somehow that tantalizing fragrance never fails to greet me with all the refreshment of a new-dawned day.

I wish I'd brought my camera along. A flock of a dozen or so geese fly low over my head in perfect “V” formation - barely clearing a neighbor's grove of bright pink crepe myrtles in full bloom. It is a sight to behold!

I hear a few fishermen out trolling for a catch - and the excavator work barge chugs by. They must be getting an early start this morning too. A landscaping company rolls past. Then another. Sprinklers gurgle and spurt to life as they arch out toward the velvet green carpets over which they preside (and a few spastic rogues water both the driveway and the mailbox with sadly misplaced gusto).

I pass occasional fellow walkers and wonder to myself about their stories…who they are…where they live…if they might be kindred spirits… We greet each other and comment lightly on the beauty of the day.

Often my morning walks are about speed, distance, performance, and practical brainstorming. But every now and then I just allow myself to be.

To breathe.

To notice.

To absorb.

It's on those kinds of days that I make the turn into my own driveway feeling like a completely different person. Reborn, in a way, because of the time I've spent communing with nature - senses wide open.

So good for the soul.


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