Tag Archives: walking

how far?

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my first step in the parks in my first pair of shoes

steps in the parks somewhere in the middle

my last step in the parks in my last pair of shoes

with all of this stepping into the parks

i thought it was be easy and interesting

to look back and see just how far i had walked

using multiple sources

and multiple attempts

it turned into quite an impossible task

as each park was shaped differently

i had walked in no particular pattern

and converting the 2061.6 total acres into distance

proved to be a bit more complicated than i expected.

s0me of my early rough calculations

(having dinosaurs on the paper seemed fitting)

scenes of me asking the big questions

with no definitive answers

i went to my daughters

who tried to create an algorithm for me

but they again pointed out that i had no consistent shape of the acreage

nor did a have a consistent path of travel through them

i then went online to an international group

of physicists, mathmeticians, engineers, etc. to seek their answers

here is a sampling:

after walking 2,061.6 acres of parks, how far have I traveled in distance?

and :

There is no way to tell. You tell us areas but not distances, nor do you give us times or velocity.

i have decided that according to my calculations

my final answer is that i traveled pretty far

during the time i spent covering the 2,061.6 acres 

and interesting coincidence

the last park on the list

the last steps i took

were in a park at the top of the very street 

where i first lived in ann arbor

in my rattletrap apartment with no money

when i moved here at age 40

having quit my job to go to grad school

and change the course of my life

this long journey with it’s twisty and immeasurable path

had somehow led me straight home.

‘only those who will risk going too far

can possibly find out how far one can go.’

– t.s. eliott

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landslide.

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i parked along a beautiful winding road

walked a few hundred feet

 to find this unmarked path

winding its way in switchbacks

all the way up to the top of this park

with natural steps made of roots and branches

and proceeded to climb

in my new shoes

1/2 size larger than the 1st pair that i’d worn out

now a size 6 1/2 instead of a solid 6

it was my first time out in them

and quickly found that

i was not yet used to the extra bit of shoe

suddenly it felt like i was walking in

giant slippery clown shoes or snorkel flippers

it was awkward

i kept kicking things

lots of near misses

almost tripping over things

until i finally really tripped on a large tree root

way up high

and found myself sliding

all the way back down to the bottom of the hill

like a scene from an old spaghetti western

i’m sure i yelled out something

and

stopping again right back where i’d started

near the beautiful road

where a cyclist happened to be riding by

who stopped to see if i was okay

 just a bit dusty and surprised really

 i stood up once more

and used my giant paddle feet to climb again

this time making it all the way to the top and into the park

none the worse for wear

and i am happy that i was not hiking in the grand canyon.

“here at the fountain’s sliding foot, / or at some fruit tree’s mossy root, /

casting the body’s vest aside, / my soul into the boughs does glide.”
 

-andrew marvell

kuebler langford park, ann arbor, mi, usa

 

forts.

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bird hills park

dolph park

dhu varen park

eberwhite woods park

loving all the forts, both big and small that i’ve discovered as i continue my journey through the ann arbor parks. forts are very sacred places. lots of heart and hard work go into the making of them – special spaces to meet and hang out with your gang.

(i’m about half way through the parks now -through the letter ‘i’)

– 80 down and 80-ish to go!  –

onward.

“i have a lot of growing up to do. i realized that the other day inside my fort. “

-zach galifianakis

 

land as community.

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 a beautiful morning walk

sharing earhart park with this lovely creature

an evening spent at the first and second sister lakes in dolph nature area

“when we begin to see land as a community to which we belong, 

we may begin to use it with love and respect.”

– aldo leopold

*i’ve now walked 60 of the ann arbor parks,

(all of the way through the letter ‘e’), only 100ish more to go-

i hope to have found and walked all of them by halloween, october 31

as i look forward to the beauty to be found in the change of seasons.