Most of the time, walking drives me crazy. I am obsessed with efficiency, and walking is slow. I think the one-minute walk to the kitchen at work goes by too slowly. The idea of a treadmill simply boggles my mind. Yes, I know that walking can be peaceful and I’m sure I should be living in the moment, but in the race between the tortoise and the hare, I tend to root for the hare.When I don’t bike into work, I don’t have a bike available for the trek from my office in Porter Square down to Lesley’s “south campus” where I teach an afternoon class. It’s a solid 13-15 minute walk from door-to-door, but I can get from my office to the classroom in just seven minutes if I bike. Just imagine what I could do with those extra five minutes! In fact, it would be enough time to wolf down some lunch, which I never seem to have time to do on teaching days.Lately I’m walking much more than I’m biking. I live less than a mile from work. When I wake up to a cold and icy morning, it’s hard to work up enthusiasm for my bike with it’s terrible windchill.
In the last month or so, Nathan has been having problems with his legs; so I’ve been doing both daycare dropoff and pickup. This means that three days a week I take H to day care around 7:30am and pick her up around 5:15pm. It’s much easier to walk than to bundle H up warmly enough to ride a bike, so I plod along without my bike like a tortoise.
But as a result of all this walking, I’ve made a friend. There’s a man who commutes on foot in an exactly an opposite pattern from me. When I am headed to Porter Square around 7:45am, he’s walking away. When I’m headed away from Porter at 5pm, he’s walking back. Over the last month and a half we started to notice each other, then started nodding, then saying a brief hello with a wave. We now have big smiles for each other every morning and afternoon. Running into him is one of the highlights of my day. It’s exactly what I love about being carfree, but I never would have met him if I was on my bike. If I don’t watch out, I might get hooked by this tortoise lifestyle.