Sometimes a walk can help us to get things in perspective, to appreciate where we are, how our lives have changed, how to live in the now and not spend time thinking about the past and worrying about the future.
That’s a rather long and clumsy sentence which I suppose could be summed up in two words ‘Carpe Diem’.
On a walk last week, we passed though ancient woodland that was still full of bluebells.These woodlands would have been home to families living in what was known as ‘fermtouns’. Animals would graze among the trees, they would build corn kilns to dry their crops and the air would be filled with the scents of charcoal burning.
These are not woods filled with tourists. In two hours we passed just one other person. It was like stepping back in time. The past and our present merged and we felt at one with our ancestors.
Our lives with all the modern technological aspects that we so take for granted seem so removed from the past. Modern medicines and modern communications, seeing family on the other side of the world on a zoom call – all these things wouldn’t have even been dreamt of in the world we had stepped back into that afternoon. For a few hours we had the benefits of the peaceful surroundings, we could listen to the cuckoo and the smaller woodland birds.
We are very fortunate – we are living in a country that isn’t being ravaged by war, we aren’t starving, our home is safe from floods or drought. Our gardens are now beginning to fill with beautiful flowers and rows of vegetables and fruit bushes. Sometimes it takes a walk to make us really appreciate our lives, to remind us that the world of our politicians which can generate so much negativity should not dominate our thoughts. We can’t ignore what is going on elsewhere, but the words of Reinhold Niebuhr come to mind – God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference.’