By Kathy Miele
Walking into the house from my evening walk the leaves and rose petals from our rosebush swirled around me and landed in the front foyer floor.
I used the last of my strength to push the front door closed then leaned against it while I tried to catch my breath.
“Are you OK?” Steven asked me.
I couldn’t answer just yet. I was bent over, my hands on my knees, trying to get in one deep breath.
“Do you want me to get you something?” he asked.
“Water,” I whispered.
Steven went into the kitchen filled a glass then came back to the foyer and handed it to me. He watched as I gulped it down. When I was finally able to catch my breath, I handed him the empty glass, then kicked off my sneakers and sat down on the couch. “Thanks, I needed that.”
I leaned my head back against the pillows and felt my heart rate getting back to normal.
“Wow, that was some walk you just took,” Steven said. “You’ve been gone for over an hour.”
“I wish I could say that I added a few more miles into my route but – I didn’t,” I complained. “It just took me all this time to finish my usual mile and a half!”
“What were you doing?”
“Are you kidding me?” I started to laugh. “Can you hear the wind out there!” I was quiet for a moment so he could listen. “I feel like I just spent the last hour practicing a mime routine of walking into the wind!”
“You were walking into the wind your entire walk?”
“I know!” I agreed with him. “I couldn’t believe it myself. I kept thinking when I went around the next corner the wind would be at my back and it would kind of help me along.
But then I’d turn that corner and bam! – the wind would practically knock me down!”
I went to push my hair back from my face and pulled a leaf out of my tangles. “I don’t think I’ve ever walked in anything like that – at least not on purpose. I swear, at one point I was looking down at the ground just thinking about putting one foot in front of the other and I felt like I was marching in place! When I looked back up I was still in front of the same house!”
“Why didn’t you just turn around and come back home?” he asked.
“I promised myself I’d try and get a walk in every evening this summer – no matter what,” I said. “I’m trying to get in better shape.”
“You know I walk on the treadmill downstairs every day, no matter what the weather is. Why don’t you try that?”
“But I like getting outside, breathing fresh air and seeing what‘s going on in the neighborhood,” I said. “Walking on a treadmill in the basement would drive me nuts.”
“That’s the choice you’ve made then.” Steven was done giving me any more sympathy.
“I should probably go brush my teeth,” I said as I moved my tongue across them. “I feel like a have a half a dozen bugs stuck to me.”
“I’ve never had to pick bugs out of my teeth when I’m on the treadmill,” Steven called as I walked to the bathroom.
“See, that’s the difference between you and me,” I called out. “I like some adventure in my workout!”