Thursday, May 04, 2006

Walking

I remember when I was young that my folks would walk around the neighborhood every evening. They knew the people who lived in the homes they passed because they talked and chatted. As I grew up, I grew up in a colder, wetter area. I walked on a treadmill.

Recently in the course of the prolonged move (will it ever end?) I sold my treadmill. There just wasn't room up here. My partner has an eliptical but there's not room to use it as we move boxes around and try and create space for two households in one house. So I walk the neighborhood.

I have met people who live here. I say hello to the people around me. I know, at least by sight several of the neighbors. If I go in the afternoon down one street there is a young mother who takes her child to a small park. In another direction there is an older couple who walk with their grandchild for a short ways.

I find that as I walk farther and into areas where there is more money and I pass the larger homes, that it is less interesting. No one is home. Perhaps I see the gardener but I don't see people in their homes. I don't see the man in his garage working on cabinetry (or something). I see only faceless windows and large garages and no people who live there. It occurs to me that perhaps this is what money does. We buy these fine houses and we are then tied to them with no time to enjoy our lives because they cost so much. Yet we need the space.

As I move and reevaluate what I want, I realize I would rather have a smaller house, loose more possessions than have to give up the time to spend with friends, with family, and even with my neighborhood.

4 Comments:

Blogger Rebecca said...

Nice post! I feel the same way. But the trick is, often, getting out of the house to take that walk. So many people do not do this anymore and so neighbors do not know neighbors. There is a lack of waves and “how you doing” going on. I am glad I took the time to meet the people on my block personally; it is nice to know who surrounds you and adds a sense of community.

11:17 AM  
Blogger Michael said...

Amen!

I am the same way when it comes to the wealthier sections of neighborhoods. The life these people lead is so stiff, and, ironically lifeless.

In short, these people are simply too rich to live.

11:41 AM  
Blogger Dana said...

I so agree with you. I miss sitting on the front porch and seeing people go by waving. It was a simpler time.

11:44 AM  
Blogger Katherine Huether said...

I love walking. I walked a lot while living in Europe. I lost weight and felt inspired by my surroundings. I wrote a lot of poetry during that time. I live in the U.S. again and I miss the walks. I walked with a purpose most of the time and some of the time I walked for the heck of it. I would walk to get around. Now when I walk, it is because I am "going for a walk" and it always feels like a big deal. It is still nice and I do enjoy it, but I miss the fact that walking was part of the lifestyle in Europe.

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7:04 PM  

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