Hiking with Bobbi Rankin
The path I usually hike, in the foothills near my home, has become mundane. I have the choice of at least 5 different routes I can trek over these beautiful tree covered hills, with sweeping views and roaming grasslands. I’ve been hiking them for a few years and I’ve seen all this beauty from every possible angle. I’m ready for some new adventure, new hills to climb, new vistas to find. Until one day last week, I brought my daughter along.
She’s a runner. Her mother, that’s me, is a hiker/walker. Because of the pace difference I was all of a sudden viewing this familiar area with a new set of eyes. Immediately, she began to run circles around me. Her motivation is get out there and get back, as quick as possible. For me it’s quite different. I place one foot methodically in front of another, pacing myself as I mosey on down the path. She’d run way out in front of me then comes running back. Back and forth, back and forth. This method is being used so we can “spend time together”.
As she approaches, I’d comment on that amazing oat tree or try to draw her into looking at the view. On and On I droll, not realizing that the runner is constantly looking at the ground and not enjoying the views, nor the flora and fauna. That’s not why she runs. The sheer pleasure of running in record time, is the personal goal of my daughter. That quick and efficient way to exercise. All in all I’m thankful that we really do enjoy each others company and we did enjoy the day.
In that process I began to see my mundane hiking trail from a different perspective. My next trek to the foothills was met with a new vitality that had slipped away from me over time. I began to hike those hills with a new energy and a feeling of freshness.
With this new realization of the beauty and views, I now see this path as a gift to me. I have many ways I can enjoy the time I spend hiking. I can look outward, catching as in a butterfly net, all this has to offer me. I have a few friends that occasionally hike along with me. We talk, laugh and listen to the stories we tell each other. There are times I listen to my iPod. I have moments where mindfulness is what I crave to restore and heal. Walking through what I call the woodland chapel, now covered like a carpet of spring green clover, is my sanctuary.
This time I spend, a few days a week, hiking those hills is precious to me. I relish the exercise it provides, the meditation I need and the time with friends. All of this is valuable to keep me feeling young and vibrant. My free outdoor hiking time is irreplaceable. Want to join me?
photos by bobbi & shinazy
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