Winter nature walks

By Phyllis Price

My walks with nature are essential to preserve the tranquility and peace of my soul, and to enable me to regroup after a busy or stressful week.

I lived many years in Chicago and was very fortunate. I lived close enough to the lake front to get to there easily. Winters in Chicago can be brutal but we would sometimes have a few days where those hail and hearty souls would venture out, having been trapped inside for weeks at a time listening to the weatherman say, “Don’t go outside unless you have to and if you do go outside cover all exposed flesh.” I was one of those individuals. I checked the temperature by going outside to determine if I should take the risk. Having Cabin Fever, I put on my fleece lined knee boots, my fur hat, my heavy gloves along with my sheep skin coat. If the walkway that extended out into the lake was not covered with ice I walked to the end and looked into the distance where the blue of the water merged with the blue of the sky, I knew I was staring into infinity and realized it is true, we are all one. I turned, look down the beach, saw nothing but pristine white snow untouched by man and marvel at how such a short time ago this same beach had been so very much alive and active with many laughing, screaming children and adults who had also come to pay homage to mother nature but in a much different way than I was doing today.

As I stood transfixed among the beauty and splendor, the stillness seemed to speak to me of silent strength, of ageless wisdom and beauty. Saying it is our time now to go within, to gain the strength, energy and vitality so much needed when the earth comes alive again in the spring. That we might share this with the humans who come to us tired and weary, so that they might go away refreshed and ready to reenter their world. But you are welcome here my friend. Come, join us, enjoy our solitude and peace that is so freely offered here. Welcome friend.

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