The Fine Art of Walking

Whether it be strolling, sauntering, perambulating, hiking or wandering … walking is one of our favorite pastimes. When we're living aboard the boat and in port, walking is usually a necessity if we want to get from here to there. We find, however, that once we're off the boat and living on land, we have to work at finding opportunities to walk because it's so convenient and easy to drive everywhere. Since we've been on our 10,000 steps a day kick, we've been working extra hard at walking to do local errands and quick grocery trips. (Notice the “we've” … see how easily I suck David into things like this.) walking in the park

Though it seems like Lin's neighborhood is out in the country, in actuality it's less than a mile away from US Route 1 which is lined with shops, banks, malls and grocery stores. Instead of borrowing Lin's car when we need to go to the bank or pick up a few groceries, we walk. It's easy to accrue at least 2-3 walking miles every day on a round trip to the store. Even our dentist is within walking distance. We exercised and got our smiles polished in the same trip the other day.

The best part of walking, beyond the exercise benefit, is that we notice things that we'd miss if we whizzed by in the car. We can tell who has the best English flower garden, where the wasps have decided to build their nests and whose house needs painting. We note where there are good sidewalks, where the crosswalks are located and where the road is too narrow to walk two abreast. We can smell the wafting aroma of cinnamon rolls baking in the nearby bakery. Sometimes we have particularly good luck … David found a dime on the sidewalk the other day.

english garden

When we can't fabricate a reason to go to the store, we head to (Francis William) Bird Park, just across the street from Lin's house. With 89 acres of meadows and trees and trails, there's plenty to keep our attention while we're walking along, skirting around the Canada goose poop and batting gypsy moths out of our faces. Cardinals and blue jays compete noisily in the trees. Squirrels race around, chasing each other. The other day, there were hot air balloons in the middle of the park giving people rides which necessitated a separate walk back to the house and back to the park with my camera.

hot air balloon

On my bucket list, I have included walking the famed Thames Path in the UK. In the past, we've walked along the Inca Trail in Peru, done the Table Mountain trail in South Africa, short sections of the Appalachian Trail on the US east coast, tens of trails in the Colorado Rockies and parts of New Zealand's Great Walks. I'm not looking for hundreds of steps (Inca Trails), hills (all the others) and rough camping (Rockies), lugging all our gear and food on our backs. I prefer comfortable distances with a pub and an inn available each evening. I've piqued David's interest in this walk … maybe a fine English walk in our future? In the meantime, I'm already thinking about how we'll manage long walks in Las Vegas' 110+F (43+C) temps.

thames path


Counting 10,000 steps with: