Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Footprints in the snow

Feeling ‘in a high state of grease’ (as Stephen Maturin would put it) from too much eating and too little moving, I decided I better go for a walk tonight. Nothing like a walk ‘to set you up’ (as Jack Aubry would put it).
It was 10 degrees below zero, but Canadians consider that quite mild to go for a walk. Where was it I read that only at minus 60 is it considered ‘too cold to go to the mall’…? So wrapped up like an astronaut I set off on my usual circuit that takes me along by the baseball park. There was a beautiful thin blanket of snow on the ground, just enough to make everything pure and white but not thick enough to hinder walking. The ‘crunch, crunch’ of my steps lulled me into a state of meditation.
I thought of the recent holiday dinner where my new girlfriend met my son for the first time and my daughter for the second. After my daughter’s first meeting my girlfriend would say ‘she is so beautiful and charming, so different than you…ha, ha’ and comments along those lines. After my son’s meeting it was ‘he is so handsome’ to which I replied ‘yes, he’s my son’ to which she replied ‘no, no, he doesn’t resemble you… ha, ha’. After the third or fourth comment of this kind I went to dig out my first (and only) British passport, issued in 1979 when I was 22 years old, 1 year older than my son today. ‘I hope you are ready for this’ I said, as I passed her my passport containing, basically, a photo of my son. Perhaps a more intense look in the eyes, but for the rest, copy and paste. ‘There!’ I exclaimed triumphantly. ‘Let us hear no more of this ‘Oh, your son is so handsome…’’
I came to the end of my path and turned around to walk back the way I had come. There on the path, unmistakably mine yet curiously alien, my footprints in the snow.

Photo by MsJimmy

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Discover The Tale of Genji, the 11th Century classic of Japan (click image)

Discover The Tale of Genji, the 11th Century classic of Japan (click image)
Kiyomizudera Temple has a large veranda looking out over Kyoto and beyond