Mud

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I’m wondering how many people have walked this path ahead of me…how many will walk behind, leaving temporary evidence that we are here, squeezing imprints of our chosen footwear into the sodden earth. We walk for different reasons…to get somewhere (though this seems to be a dying practice) to walk our dogs, for meditation or exercise. I wonder what it would look like if we could see the lines of our movements drawn onto the surface of the earth. How far and where would we have been? It’s interesting that we talk about our ‘carbon footprint’ yet this refers to anything but walking. If we walked more our carbon footprint would diminish in favour of our muddy ones. Our bodies are designed to walk…it’s one of those natural instincts and on the whole, we have the physical equipment built in. But we have created a world where our connections are a long way away. We work way beyond walking distance from our homes or we work from home so we only have to walk down the stairs to get there.  We forget to leave time to allow for walking and it’s too expensive for people to live in places close to all the amenities they need. The artist Richard Long made art from his walks; he sensed something profound in the meditative activity of walking http://www.richardlong.org/index.html . It can give us time to think and prepare, time to notice things along the way. Whether we are artists or not, walking can add so much to our lives…it’s such a simple thing.

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