Walking

I’ve recently started trying to walk more when I get home from work. There are several reasons for this.

The first is that it turns out that sitting on your ass for 50 hours a week at work might not actually be that great for your health. My back has been finicky lately and worrying about how my back is incredibly boring to me and makes me feel aged in a way that seems unfair, given that I am also worrying about the large zit on my cheek at the moment.

The second is that I live in Minnesota, where we are required by law to do outside things when the weather is nice. We get snow in May, so we are obligated to be demonstratively appreciative when we are in the sweet spot between snow and mosquitos.

I’ve also discovered that I really, really enjoy the podcast Pop Culture Happy Hour and have made a deal with myself that I can only listen to it while I’m walking. I currently have 13 episodes in my queue, so that bodes well for my fitness this month.

But one of the biggest reasons is that I just really love my neighborhood these days.

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We’re coming up on three years in this house, which is the longest we’ve lived in one place in almost 12 years of marriage. I feel more home here than I’ve felt anywhere else.

My neighborhood also currently smells amazing. The flowers are going crazy and sometimes I just have to stop and take a deep breath. There is no perfume that smells quite as good as a lilac bush in full flower.

Sometimes I feel a little bit of yard shame. Some of our neighbors have really beautiful yards. We have children instead.

I did plant some purple flowers in my window box, so I made an effort. They’re still alive and everything. *pats self on finicky back*

Our neighborhood also has poetry.

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I enjoy coming across a poem in the sidewalk I haven’t seen before — this one was from tonight’s walk and I found it satisfying.

I’ve been walking basically the same route lately, an ever expanding rectangle that leads from my house, past our local park, down past streets filled with old houses and, increasingly, new construction filling small city lots with gigantic houses. There is much distress in the neighborhood Facebook page about these new houses being built where old, small houses used to be. I’m pro-old, small house but I try not to think uncharitable thoughts about the people who will live in the 4000 square foot houses sandwiched between two 1400 square footers. Sometimes I try to peek through the windows. The kitchens are awfully pretty.

Although our neighborhood isn’t economically diverse and isn’t as generally diverse as we might like it to be, I notice the rainbow pride flag hanging from one house and other signs that tell me that my neighborhood is probably a political bubble, but it is my bubble, so it feels comfortable.

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I’ve been restless most of my adult life. I’m home now*

*Unless we can figure out how to move to Canada. Because, reasons.

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