Monday, 10 November 2008

Morning glory

Most mornings I walk for between 45 minutes and an hour. I do this even when I do not want to!

These recent mornings have been wonderful for walking. Night time temperatures have fallen to about 55 F. So the mornings have been relatively “crisp” and a sweat shirt and pants have been the uniform for the morning.

We are having some lovely misty mornings as the many local ponds give off their heat.

This morning I walked alongside the huge (45-hole) “Bobby Jones Golf Complex” and the misty scene (apart from a few palms) could easily have been one from the Somerset levels.

(See )

It is so flat here, just like that flat land in western Somerset, England. There are no great vistas, and I believe that’s why I have become much more aware of the sky.

Sarasota is not in a great conurbation, so the stars show very brightly.

Since our skies are often cloudless I have become very aware of stars in these darker mornings, and also of sister moon. I have learned to look up, not out.

I meet many “regulars” on my morning walks. One woman walk with a big old brown/black dog named “Rio”. Rio is a shy and nervous beast, and as I approach he puts his head down as if to say “I am very humble”. I bend over and place my head next to his, and we snuggle each other. If he were a cat he would purr.

A couple walks with their two recovering Greyhounds, “Grudge” and “Babe”. They, like most Greyhounds are “softies”. They are delighted when I fuss over them.

“Archie” is a grouchy dog. His owner named him “Archie” after “Archie Bunker” whose personality he shares.

I am more respectful and call this dog “Mr. Bunker”. He no longer barks at me, but we are not yet “friends”.

I also encounter people with whom I exchange friendly greetings. I am never sure of their names (it’s more important to know the dogs’ names!).

There is Mr. and Mrs. Pickle-Face (that what I call them). The man is tall and gaunt and looks as if (as Dorothy Parker’s hairdresser said of Calvin Coolidge) “he was weaned on a pickle”. They are delightful folks, snow-birds from West Virginia, who walk for five miles each morning.

I see Mr. and Mrs. Chapeau (my name for them). They each have cheery countenances, and wear wonderful hats. I greet them with a hearty “Bonjour Monsieur et Madame Chapeau”, and they grin from ear to ear.

Finally there is the man whom I greet as “Mr. Good Neighbour”. He walks the length of his street at 6:00 a.m. and carries his neighbours’ newspaper from the end of their long driveways to their front doors.

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