My husband and I woke up this morning and took a stroll down to Rustica, one of our favorite cafes in San Miguel.
There, among the plants and trees and tinkling fountain, I thought about how lucky we are that we can amble along and that we have such a lovely place to do it.
Not everyone can do so.
Almost everyone can walk. Some plod or trudge along, some power walk, others move quickly forward with long purposeful strides.
Many are doing it to get somewhere.
Walking is a necessity for some, they have no other way of getting around. Bus routes don’t work in their neighborhood, or along the route they need to take. The timetables don’t coincide with what they need to do. A car has broken down or is non-existent in the first place; for whatever reason.
For these people, passing through space to get somewhere, surroundings might just be a backdrop. Hazy and blurred as they ruminate with what needs to be accomplished during the day, or at the end of their walk. Heads down, devices in hand. Running through time.
Perhaps they have a bike. That is a good way to get around. In many European countries that is the preference. A bike can get you somewhere or used for work. It can also be used to tour surroundings. A bike offers the possibility of distance. You can get lost on a bike, literally and mentally.
But to promenade, saunter, wander, ramble, trek, meander and traipse, you need a luxury many don’t have.
Time because you are retired and don’t worry about a time clock. Time because you have weekends free. Time because you have made a decision that a breather is necessary to your good health no matter what time of day. Time because you don’t have responsibilities. Time because you have some at the end of the day. Time to take a vacation.
And then, you need a place conducive to just being. One with yourself. One with nature. One with your environment.
Not everyone has that either.
I picture a little lane in the countryside, a cobbled street here in San Miguel, a rocky trail in the wilderness, a city block for window shopping, a tree-lined street in a neighborhood.
In order to have time and a place for being, you need the means to enjoy them.
I am talking about money.
Not oodles of it. But enough to allow for free time and excursion. Enough to have an uncluttered mind.
In today’s world, that deep breath is becoming more elusive for more and more people. And we will see repercussions as people find it necessary to be at full speed in order to pay for life.
So, as Glenn and I dawdle home from our breakfast through our lovely town of San Miguel, we are aware of how lucky we are and we don’t take it for granted.