I am happy to report that I got to hike, legally, in Edgewood Park after work today. I would like to think that the park was as happy to see me as I was to see it. There were social distancing, one way trail markers along the route, and families, couples, solo hikers out enjoying the evening.
Of course, someone of a canine nature, did not join in the celebration, August had to stay home, and he is a dog that likes to be where I am, as many hours as there are in a day.
I swear, we had a gorgeous morning hike, and I made him a snack to compensate for the heartbreak, a peanut butter and jerky sandwich ( his kind of treat, not for human consumption TBS), but I will have ground to make up tomorrow!
To answer what I perceive to be your questions: 1 yes, the park was beautiful, the views, the trees, the air, the ground,
2 no, my I didn't get teary eyed because I was so happy to be able to walk the official Serpentine Trail again, my eyes were just a bit leaky, and 3. YES, I will risk breaking Auggie's heart again and will be going back soon!.
When Neal and I were looking for our first home, I was ever so pregnant, and we found Emerald Hills! While the house was in escrow, we used to "visit" the house, driving down from the city, parking on our future street, and walking around a bit. Then we would head over to Edgewood Park, and take short hikes up the trails. I was not an elegant pregnant person, I gained more weight than recommended, I was working at a hospital, so I was on my feet quite a bit, and gave up wearing "cute" shoes, and stomped around in sneakers as much as possible. So, in one of my ever so cool maternity smocks, sneakers, off I went, with Neal taking the lead, and unclear on the concept that I was not the same spitfire that used to sprint up 6 floors in high heels, just because the elevator was too slow. He adjusted his pace, and we made these visits a regular thing while we waited for our baby to come. As a couple, as a family, and now on my own in these past months, spending time at this nature preserve has mattered, has been a place to connect with each other, and remain amazed at the peace of being in nature.
Now, for the magical part of today's hike. My dear Mary D met me, for a socially distant hike at the park, which may have been part of the reason my eyes leaked a bit. On one of the turns in the path Mary pointed out her gratitude rocks, a flat space at the convergence of several trails, where she likes to stop. Her tradition is to pick up a smallish rock, place it on top of a larger one, and say one thing she is grateful for. Part of the Camino tradition is to take a rock from home, and walk with it throughout the Camino, placing it at the Cruz de Ferro, as a symbol of laying your burden down, since I am walking from home to home, I have been debating how would I honor this ritual, which holds such significance for me. And, not for the first, and not for the last time, Mary helped me find a way.
I put a small pebble in my backpack this evening, and will return it to Edgewood during my last days of this walk, another way of letting go of some of the load I have been carrying, in a place that has been so special to me for so long.