Thursday, September 2, 2010

Two-Footed Certainty

On My Feet

Tuesday’s Unexpected Long Walk (8/31/10)

It’s chaos around town these days.  The fall semester officially started on Monday, and what was once a peaceful, sleepy university town has turned into swarms of people and cars zigzagging in all directions with no concern for traffic patterns or each other.  It’s a little hard to adjust to this much change, all at once.  I miss the summer session!  Come back, summer session!

On most weekdays, I ride the bus to and from campus.  I like bike-riding a lot, but I like not having to worry about the sweat and grime after I get off the bike.  I also feel like it might be too much for my body to bike to and from work and do all the other exercise I might like to do for fun—the yoga, the running, and the occasional aqua-jog.  So I take the bus.

I was strolling over to my bus stop on Tuesday evening when I saw the bus pull away from the curb—four minutes early!  I literally watched it drive away without me.  It was shocking.  Texas A & M busses are incredibly punctual, and they are never, ever supposed to leave a stop early.  I couldn’t believe I just missed the bus because someone can’t follow instructions!

It was so, so hot that evening, with temperatures in the 90s and the evening sun shining.  I waited at the bus stop for almost 20 minutes, on the off chance that another bus would come around, but I was unlucky—and pissed.  Hot and angry, I began the long walk home.  I walked for more than 40 minutes, and as I put one foot in front of the other, I started noticing small things, like the way the wind cooled my sweaty skin or the way the sun cast long shadows as it dipped into the horizon.  The closer I got to home, the more my anger dissipated into something closer to calm.  Thank goodness I was wearing a pair of walking sandals—they kept my feet comfortable during this unexpected long walk.

In spite of the frustration of this story, I think there is a lesson to be learned here: most of the time, unexpected difficulties are not as bad as we fear they will be.  I didn’t want to walk home that night, in the heat and already tired from full day at work, but being upset about it felt worse than just accepting my fate.  I could have called a cab, but what for?  To take me home when my own two feet can do the job?  Nah—I’d rather just walk and be certain of my own strength and resourcefulness.


  1. "Unexpected difficulties are not as bad as we fear they will be." How true, but how easily forgotten. Thanks for the reminder!

  2. You are welcome! It's not always the case, but for the anxiety-prone, like me, I think it's worth remembering.

    Happy weekend, Laurie!