I am now back home after a month away. My house feels luxurious. I love my beautiful large kitchen, comfortable king-sized bed with good quality sheets, cable TV and soaking tub. I can't believe how fortunately I am.
After a few days of self-congratulatory bliss, it is time to get started again on my exercise program. With some exceptions, I was reasonably active while I traveled, and I watched what I ate, so I still feel in pretty good shape. Stretching feels great. The exercises are like old friends and are helping my spine recover from the minimalism of Scandinavian beds (they do not have box springs and mattresses, but instead a sort of lumpy combination base covered by two light down comforters in duvets, which you sleep between.)
Today I began my track work again. Unfortunatley the high school track where I used to walk was locked because school is now in session, so I went to Brookside Gardens near my house. I can't believe I have been letting such a beautiful place go untouched by my eyes and feet. The Japanese maples are a full, rusty red, and perfectly placed behind the Japanese style pavilion.
Giant cut rocks form natural benches. They were hard to resist. The first hundred feet or so my legs were leaden, but from past experience I know if I keep going they will lighten. Sure enough after about ten minutes there was a spring in my step. Unlike the track, the Garden's paths gently rise and fall around a beautiful like filled with water lilies. So I actually had to walk uphill. As I approached the first rise, I felt a bit intimidated, but I told myself if it was too hard, I could take a rest one of the beautiful rocks. But I made it, jauntily stepping out to cover the slight incline quickly.
On the opposite side of the lake I approached an Asian man about my age, who was simply standing on the side of the path, looking and breathing. I stopped and stood beside him for awhile experiencing the first cool air of fall, and my breath. My body felt energized yet calm.