Today, I walked farther than on any other day of post-op doctor’s orders. Although none of my doctors ever said how FAR these walks, or what I refer to as Street Hikes, are supposed to be. Street Hikes, because saying that “I went for a walk” sounds like something from a time and place where poets would visit nature, and contemplate, in mental verse, the changing color of the leaves. Then slog home and, with quill and ink, scratch out five full pages of words, trying to craft similes connecting turning leaves to emotions felt while knees-deep in a mud bog before the winter solstice, or a fork in a road no one should travel, that leads to a different time and place where people have learned to hate poetry in the 21st century.

Yeah, I walk a little differently than that.

If you are one of the lucky ones to follow me on Instagram, you may have seen a couple of stories of me… walking. Not Street Hiking. More like Street Shuffling. Slowly. Painfully. Walking tall, one halting foot in front of the other. I made sure that, when I posted those videos, that on the days I spent more time grunting than silently breathing, I left the sound off. Because if I didn’t want to hear my own body complain on a quarter-mile, 20 minute shuffle in the neighborhood, I sure as hell didn’t want anyone else hearing it, either.

Today, I walked just over 3 miles in just under one hour. So, doing the math, I walked 12 times farther, 4 times faster, than my first halting outside steps the day after I got home from the hospital. Now before you start SLOW-clapping me to blush, remember that 3 miles-an-hour is still officially SLOW AS HELL. Once upon a long, long time ago, I covered that same distance in right around 20 minutes. Also, once upon a long, long time ago, I would have said, “I ain’t doin’ this for my health”.

Which now is the ONLY reason I’m doing it.

Because the last thing what’s happened to me is going to do is keep me from walking tall.

(c) copyright 2020 William S. Friday