Singing like a caged bird

Tuesday, February 03, 2004


Yesterday was a beautiful day....the temperature climbed to the freezing point (32 F/0 C), the sun shown brightly in a clea,r deep blue sky and the winds were silent. It made the perfect opportunity for my first real walk outside since my surgery. The cool air was warm enough not to make my lungs respond with pain producing coughs. My first strides were tentative as I maneuvered over the packed snow path. But after reaching the roadway, the brilliant sun, plows and salt had done their work and there was dry pavement. My strides lengthened as under-utilized muscles felt the freedom of movement, my spine straightened and I began to walk with great ease and freedom. The fresh air filled my chest and I began to drink in the elixir of the outside world. The sun beamed in my face and warmed me as I headed south. At the end of the street was a freshly made little puddle of water with two cavorting sparrows splishing and splashing like two kids in a summer wading pool, whilst chirping merrily away. They fell silent as I intruded on their fun, and quickly flew into a nearby bush for shelter as if it were a cabana. Turned west to start a circuitous route that would be full of strides, few cars, and never far from a return to home if required. As I walked, my warmth increased and I truly was having my spirits lifted. This was real progress, one small step for man, a giant leap for my psyche. Turning north, noticing the newly installed for sale sign on a neighbors snow covered lawn. Through the completely vacant parking lot of Leon's Mexican restaurant....the sun beating down on stucco walls could easily be in Cabo San Lucas, but the snow piled high around the parking lot quickly dispelled any of those foolish thoughts. Turning left again, then right, then left brought me to a preplanned check on the construction of the latest addition of housing in the neighborhood. It is a huge house far larger than any others nearby...and money is being spent as shiny copper sheets, reflecting in the sunshine, were being molded into a roof and eaves. I counted 13 trucks of construction workers....the push must be on to have this house ready for the summer racing season. The top floor windows can clearly see the clubhouse turn across the vacant field that will be packed with cars for the month of august. Enough of being a nosy neighbor, turning south, the sun in my face once again I stride along at a quickened pace, so much for lolligagging. Soon I began to hear a racket up ahead. It is a whole flock of the sparrows sunning. They have installed themselves in a tangle of bittersweet vines that have engulfed three spruce trees that have since withered and died. The vines are mostly brown but there are still splotches of brilliant red and yellow from the prized little berries. Scattered throughout this tangle are dozens of sparrows all puffed up like little brown and gray snowballs. They too fall silent as I approach, then chatter madly as I pass by. I can imagine the conversation about one of those characters sporting a "Dean" button. I am sure the ones in the bush are not supporting THE Bush. If all creatures could vote, the Kyoto accords would be in full force around the world I believe. Another right brings me fully around the loop and as I approach the shallow swimming hole, I see it has been abandoned for the moment. And a final right retraces my steps back up my own street, checking the mail box for wanted news, I find only bills and adverts. Passed the"Dean For America" sign stuck in the snowbank at the end of my driveway and I am home. It is indeed a great day, and although feeling a tad tired, IT IS GOOD!!!!


I think the real winner of the super bowl may be Ti-Vo


Here is a quote that I like and must try to pracitice as much as I try to increase my daily walks:

In seeking the essence of the Way,
one should quiet the mind
and penetrate to the depths.
Silently wander within
and clearly see the origin
of all things, obscured by nothing.
The mind is boundless and formless,
just as the pure water
contains the essence of autumn.
It is glistening white and lustrously bright
in the same way that
moonlight envelops the entire night.

- Hung-chih (12th century)


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