“Will you walk a little faster” said a whting to a snail, there’s a porpoise close behind us and he’s treading on my tail.”—Lewis Carroll
Sometimes a daily walk can do more than improve your health. It can brighten your day and give you hope for the next generation. During this time in history we hear reports every day about childhood obesity. We see the evidence of unhealthy lifestyles every where. My experiences this week gave me hope.
I walked the same route twice in a row this week, once in the afternoon and the next day in the morning. On the first day I encountered a male and a small child taking a break along the other side of the road. The child, a little girl of four or five-years-old, called out “Hi.”
I responded and then I exchanged some unimportant pleasantry with her Dad. He then asked her if she was ready to continue. I watched as she feverishly pedaled away with Dad jogging to keep up. I had not walked very far when I heard this little voice yell, “I used to fall off but I can go really fast now.”
At a time when it is common to find both adults and children glued to their computers or video games it warmed my heart to see this Father and daughter both outside, both getting some exercise. It was my privilege to hear a little girl, who had obviously gained a sense of achievement because she no longer fell off of her bike and could now go “really fast,” express her confidence so clearly.
The next morning as I walked along that same street I heard a little voice call out, “Hi,” followed by, “I remember you.” I recognized the voice immediately. I looked back to see her playing in a yard filled with outdoor play equipment.
I waved. Then I heard another voice, “Hi.” So I waved again. And then a third voice called out to me. And once again I waved back. Three little girls played in the yard. I wish this was an experience, seeing children play outdoors, that I would have more often. It gave me hope.
We live in one of the most beautiful parts of the country and even when we are having a perfect Pacific Northwest day, I seldom see anyone outside. I commend the Mom’s and Dads, the caretakers, the big brothers and sisters that take time away from their treasured technology to go for a walk or accompany a little child as she learns to ride her bicycle “really fast.”
I hope that I see more of this as I continue to walk around our community.