Wednesday, July 5, 2017

Walking

I went for a walk past 8 o'clock this some evening ago. The sky was so blue and empty. It made me think about when I found the blueness of the sky, the greenness of grass, and the brightness of the sun puzzling matters. I can have the same thoughts these days, but not the same feelings which once accompanied them. Perhaps none of it began with thoughts at all, but feelings, rather...

What did any of this phenomena mean in relation to me? That's what I was wondering when I had those thoughts. I'm not sure I ever came to an answer on that. Somehow, I stopped caring. I don't find myself particularly distracted by the scenery in which I walk among anymore. Every so often, I take notice of a stoplight, or a sunset, or clouds, but my thoughts take precedence. In some ways, I am very immune to what others take to be beautiful. Mountains, for instance, do not move me in a profound way like they seem to for many others.

I suppose, in a way, the disinterest is still there. It feels wrong to deny the beauty of mountains, but my interest in them is only cursory. My inner-aesthete motivates me to make beautiful that which has been deemed 'boring.' A stoplight can be interesting, as can so many other signs, traffic or otherwise. And if the sign lights up, well, that's even better. Perhaps I can put my interest in signs to good use one day by becoming a semiotician.

I think quite often of Kierkegaard's clever words about walking. He says: “Above all, do not lose your desire to walk. Everyday, I walk myself into a state of well-being & walk away from every illness. I have walked myself into my best thoughts, and I know of no thought so burdensome that one cannot walk away from it. But by sitting still, & the more one sits still, the closer one comes to feeling ill. Thus if one just keeps on walking, everything will be all right.”

4 comments:

  1. Charles Dickens was a profuse walker. Unless you're walking with someone else, you're usually not in a situation to talk to others; when you stop is when you talk. When you walk, it implies that your mind cannot be engaged. It frees the mind to tend to other things. In Dickens' case, it was probably his stories.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Upon you mentioning that, I looked into it a little. That's nuts how far he'd be willing to venture on foot, seemingly spur of the moment. I never exactly thought of the movement in the way you described it, but I think that really hits the nail on the head. Also, I have "A Christmas Carol" waiting on my book shelf. I should give it a read once December comes around.

      Delete
    2. Very interesting. I like to take marathon walks (I've done multiple 20+ mile walks, which took 7-9 hours), and I remember every one of them, and my mental state distinctly. I wish I had more time to do that now. I feel like I am overdue. Admittedly, I've taken a friend along on all of them (only one at a time, though), but once you hit that 3-4 hour mark, you aren't really talking anymore. A brief solo 1-2 mile walk is about all I've been able to pull lately, but my mind appreciates every one of those.
      As far as mountains, as South Louisiana is as low as you can go (altitude wise), and even lower (seriously, New Orleans' average altitude is BELOW sea level!), mountains have always blown my doors off, but curiously, my sister, who has spent just as much time in this swampy terrain as I have, often referred to them on childhood vacations as "just big rocks," generally followed by, "Nic, get back in the car, let's go!" Ironically, she is a marathon runner.

      Delete
    3. That's impressive! I have yet to do a marathon of any kind ... but hey, if a disinterest for mountains and a liking for marathon running are correlated, at least there's some hope for me LOL

      Delete