Monday, November 23, 2009

Natural Harassment

As part of my weight-loss quest I'm trying to jog (running is still a bit too ambitious for me at the moment) for at least 45 minutes a day. With Derek's schedule being the way it is, I had to finally bite the bullet and accept that mornings were the only possible opportunity for such exertion. This morning I had to fight my instinct (or personal preference) from automatically siding with the cons of this plan, namely the cold, the effort but mostly my dread of waking up early in the morning, and look at the pros. I get my exercise and potentially more energy, I lose weight, I get outside and all without the worry of taking the baby with me! So, up I got and out I went. Why did I have to start this on a morning that had almost a foot of snow on the ground?

Thankfully, My jog wasn't as hard as I was imagining. I was able to reach a good pace and hold it for longer than expected. I was feeling awesome. I was awesome! After about half-an-hour running streets nearby I decided to turn my shuffling travels toward the nature park. I figured this could be my reward for my awesomeness during my cold morning trudge. An added bonus was that I could walk. Why not? After all, the streets were somewhat plowed while the nature park was not. Walking through snow should keep my heart-rate up enough to count right? This way I was more prepared to enjoy nature, instead of mindlessly shuffling past thinking about my burning calves and cold nose.

Ahhhhhh...nature. Is there anything more beautiful? The snow brightened the landscape and muffled the noxious noise of the nearby commuters with effortless ease. Looking at the tracks on the ground I could tell that someone had walked their dog earlier that morning (earlier? sick), but for the time-being I was the only person there. Solitude in nature can be mesmerizing, and I enjoyed every second. As my walk continued, I could see more tracks. Another dog, a cat, a deer and even duck tracks. I remember thinking, 'ducks, how cute! I wonder if I'll see one.' Have you ever noticed how a duck's webbed foot can look like a blivet or, I should say, a devil's pitchfork?

Those of you who have been to the nature park know that at the back there's a small inlet that dead ends before it reaches around a small, but fat, peninsula of land. Here the water freezes over last, if at all. Here is where ducks collect. As I approached this spot I could see two of them resting peacefully just off the path. 'Please don't go away,' I thought, 'I won't hurt you.' To my delight, they didn't seem afraid at all. My good friend Vicki Matheson , as a feeder of ducks, will not be surprised at what happened next. As I followed the curve of the path it skirted around this inlet. 30 or 40 ducks sat paddling in the water, waiting for me. As soon as they realized I was there the call went out. Squawks and quacks of every octave resonated toward me in a great echoing demand for food. Food? I don't have any food. Big mistake. The longer I walked without forfeiting the goods the louder they became. I think if I would have lingered they would have demanded their bread with more vigor, and maybe more force. One thing was made inescapably clear, they were me. Needless to say, my lesson is learned. Never go jogging without some bread in your pocket. It could save your life.

1 comment:

  1. LOL! Oh Mama Jesse, I once took Malcom there without bringing them food, and we barely escaped with our lives! I'm totally amazed at your determination to go running, in the COLD and SNOW, in the MORNINGS!!! Woah!!! Seriously, that is totally awesome and inspirational! Best of luck, I love your writing Jesse. You write a book and I will totally read it!