Tuesday, November 22, 2011

A New England Fall Foilage Walk

Feature Entry: A New England Fall Foilage Walk

Vacation is a good time to get away from routine. Earlier this month, the MoneyWalker took a break from money walking and focused on the beauty found during an extended New England fall scenery walk during a trip to visit family. I wanted to see the fall foliage viewed through a walker’s perspective.

The walk gave rise to a new walking strategy – Google Map Walking. From previous experience in the area, several potential walking destinations were determined. Then by placing in the address of the departure point and the destination point, Google provided a walking map complete with number of miles, estimated walking time, and the street names of the route. If the mile count was too great or small, a different destination was considered until a match was found between the desired walk length and the designation.

After considering destinations ( a waterfall in Cannondale, the Allen Meadows Park, or Friends of Ambler Farm,) I selected Weston Township Library. They were having a “Friends of the Library” book sale. The distance was 2.6 miles one-way and produced an amazing walk. Given that my usual walk is about four miles, and because I became lost a few times (next time I will download the map rather than rely upon sketchy notes), the actual walk was about 6.5 miles. A 6.5 mile walk is a great way to use walking as an antidote for vacation overeating.

During the walk, a quote from Richard Schmidt from his book Motor Control and Learning came to mind: “When stimulus contacts memory.” Wilton, Connecticut provides remarkable venues with rambling lanes, streams, waterfalls, craggy outcroppings of rocks, resplendent homes, and of course trees of every size, shape and color. As the multiple varieties of stimuli slowly connected with one memory source after another, what occurred was a smorgasbord of delightful recalls from the best of previous walks and of being in the “now.” Moreover, I cannot overstate the value of walking to enhance the experience of seeing beauty up-close in New England’s fall foliage season.

And once more, Marcel Proust’s involuntary memory theories came to mind. The synaptic connections triggered uncontested “unintentional thoughts.” With no distractions presented by the urgency of others, the mind was free to explore thoughts and ideas of far reaching dimensions. In a guilt free state of mind and in the midst of nature’s beauty, such thoughts produced an incredible sense of happiness.

As for the book sale, four bargains including two Nancy Drew novels for my granddaughter, hardly was a burden during the equally lovely walk home.


Current Weight = 176.2 lbs

Money found on today’s walk = $.86

1 comment:

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