Monday, June 04, 2012

hunting by rivers, through the streets

Despite what Joy Division may have taught us, it's not always such a bad thing to walk in silence.  

The ridge was calling to me on Sunday morning, inviting me to ditch the basement workout in favour of taking the air, to stretch my legs instead on the pathway between the fancy houses to my left and the river valley underscoring the mountains on the horizon to my right.  Steve, the ipod which normally accompanies me on these walks, didn't appear to be holding its charge.  But the ridge was calling, not to be ignored, so I opted for silence and empty pockets.

That doesn't mean I was without music though.  I have had John K Samson's infectious song, When I Write My Master's Thesis, stuck in my head for the past week.  Turns out it's precisely the right beat at which to maintain a brisk pace.  

It's quite surprising what you can hear when you are without ear buds. At one point, a large crow flew over me at low altitude.  I could hear the flapping of its wings as it approached, before I even saw the bird itself.  They sound powerful. Remind me never to get into a bitch-slapping incident with a crow.

The mountains on the horizon were surprisingly snow-capped, which is heartening, hopefully a sign that the eventual melt will provide us with sufficient water throughout the season.  I watched them maintain their distance, the meandering creek in the valley below protecting me from their menace.  I like the mountains from that distance; they just provide a picturesque backdrop to the prairie horizon.  I don't need to get much closer than that.

When I had seen enough nature, I simply turned my head slightly to check out the houses across the road.  They are occupied by some seriously house-proud folks.  I doubt my weedy patchy lawn would be welcomed in the neighbourhood.  I had to think of the Offspring when I realized that at least 3/4 of the houses that I passed had balconies.  She loved balcony houses when she was wee.  Ironically she now lives below grade.  

Where do you walk?

13 comments:

mister anchovy said...

Sunday mornings through the summer, I like to walk county forests in Southern Ontario. My excuse is to hunt for mushrooms but if there were no mushrooms I think I'd find another reason.

I also love walking trout streams. It's magical. In your neck of the woods, parts of the Crowsnest and some of the rivers across the pass into BC are just about perfect.

Barbara Bruederlin said...

Your walks are considerably wilder and more adventurous than mine, Mr Anchovy. And of course your dogs will always provide you with a built-in walking excuse, if you ever find you need an excuse.

Lesley said...

One of the things that makes me feel so lucky to live where I do is all the available places to get out and walk/run: greenways, trails, parks. I love it. I walk mostly with my dogs so I like exposing them to new areas. Often we'll go walk the older part of town with the huge, Victorian or Plantation-style houses and I just dream about living in one some day while trying to keep them from peeing on someone's prize-winning lawn. It's one of my favorite things to do.

Allison said...

To and from work, and to the gym. So along the same route, but there is always lots to look at.

I particularly love walking back to my flat in the evening, when I have a direct view of the Golden Ears mountains. That is when the clouds break. ;)

John Mutford said...

I don't walk anymore, since the summer weather started. I'm now biking-- doing the streets of Yellowknife in alphabetical order.

Barbara Bruederlin said...

Your dogs are so lucky to be able to pee on prize-winning lawns, Lesley! It's long been a dream of mine.
It sure sounds like you live in a very walkable city.

The clouds breaking in the evening is always a lovely sight, Al, made even better when paired up with an awesomely-named mountain range.

Do you ever need to portage over to the K's, John, or did the city planners anticipate this alphabetical cycling trend?

Anonymous said...

I often take the dog (aka jakethejerk) to the northeast woods which is many acres of forest with a maze of trails. I often run there as well without the dog as he is getting older, mind you so am I. I can run 15 K without being on the same trail twice in there. The other place we go is down to the beach when the tide is out. There we have numerous bald eagles in the trees to the west and a view of the mountains of the mainland to the east.

Not so anonymous Kelly

Jane Harley said...

Bitch slapping a crow? How about hair pulling with a black bird?

Oh ya - she went there - TWICE (and now I'm trying to avoid this section of the canal)!

http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/ottawa/story/2012/05/24/ottawa-angry-birds-attacking-rideau-canal-joggers.html

As for music-less exercise, only on my bike, mostly so I don't get hit by buses.

Barbara Bruederlin said...

You do live in a magical place, Kelly. And Jake is one lucky dog.

Still laughing here, Jane! I can't believe you (and your shiny bouncy ponytail)made the news clip twice! Those blackbirds know how to pick the photogenic joggers, obviously.

Jane Harley said...

That's not me! But come to think of it, totally looks like me. That sneaky little bird only attacked me off camera. And multiple others, who I see also getting attacked, every time I ever run or bike by there. Pretty funny, but getting borderline annoying now that it's gone on for weeks!

Barbara Bruederlin said...

Either I am going blind or I am a dope, because I was convinced that was you, Jane! Although come to think of it, your ponytail would have been just a bit shinier and bouncier...

Vol-E said...

I checked out Samson's song on YouTube. It is indeed infectious, and ideal for fast-walking. Thanks!

Barbara Bruederlin said...

Yay! I'm so glad you enjoyed it, Vol-E! He's a huge favourite of mine and I love the spread the love.