Monthly Archives: March 2018

Persistent Rain is a DOWNER but not a MASTER

It’s been raining for days.  Not terribly cold.  Very few rays of sun making it through the thick, gray sky.  Rain, mist, drizzle, some thunder, some toadstranglers.  If you’re not familiar with the term toadstrangler to describe a kind of downpour, go look it up.  Highly descriptive.

Such weather makes me want to go to bed, stay in bed, and pull the covers up.  Three or four days of this weather and I’m pretty sure I become belligerent and crabby, and unreasonable without even knowing it.  People tell me.  I hate it – and them, and you, and puppies, and butterflies, and chocolate cake.

Walking is about the ONLY effective treatment.  Walking and my almost 2 year old granddaughter who is more fun than 6 monkeys in a room full of opened honey jars.  So, I stick to the walking – with and without the granddaughter.  She’s a trooper.

Since I much prefer to walk outside – especially on park trails – I have a wardrobe of shoes, pants, and toppers that can get wet and muddy.  Strollers are not properly outfitted for this dirty work, so baby stays home.  I walk at a state park near my home, ford the creek when it rises due to all the rain, and blaze new trails around the worst mud puddles that block the trail.  If it’s not lightning, I’m good.

Of course, said walk on said trail is not a quick outing.  Suiting up, then cleaning up after, take up a fair amount of time.  Muddy car, extra laundry, not to mention the hair disaster that ensues.  A 30 minute hike turns into a 2 hour ‘event’.   But, it’s often worth it.

Rain is predicted here for the rest of this week.  Bummer!  I will need to get creative just to keep my head on straight.  I’ve noticed that crabby, puppy hating, chocolate deprived people create the kind of drama I don’t want following me around.

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Podcasts For Walking – Zombies, Terrorists, and Scotland Await………….

One of my sons called me today to let me know about a series of podcasts he had recently learned about.  He is a walker and biker and usually has something playing in his ears.  He knows about this blog and assumed I was still writing frequent articles.  He knows that despite my poor performance as the author of a blog, I continue to be a dedicated walker.

The series of podcasts he shared with me are called ‘Walker’.  My research into the matter makes me want to download the first one and get started.  The thing works like this:  The author has written about 30 episodes of the serial, each meant to last about as long as a 1-2 mile walk.  The premise is uncomplicated but genius!  There has been a massive terrorist attack carried out by some extremists.  The police are on the lookout for the terrorists AND they think YOU (Walker) are one of them!  So, you are on your own in escaping both the destruction created by the attack AND the police as you make your way across the country of Scotland.  The author is Scottish.

She has written a previous series, ‘Zombies, Run’ whose premise seems pretty straightforward, based solely on the name.  I’m not a fan of the modern craze of zombie fiction – but many are.  There’s a reason it’s popular, right?

The author, Naomi Alderman, was interviewed on NPR as I was driving home, less than an hour after my son had called to tell me about the podcast.  She was a charming interview.  One question that developed in my mind as my son was telling me about the whole thing was:  how fast and far must one walk (run, bike, hike) to stay in the timeline of the podcast?  The interview answered that question.  Alderman wrote the series, intending it to be used by everyone ‘on the move’.  She stated that even a person in a wheelchair could participate.

How does the podcast actually work?  In a rather military fashion as though you (Walker) have a high grade military earpiece linked into the scene, you hear what’s going on.  You are autonomous – with no indication of age, gender, race, etc – and receive messages all the time in the form of characters who chat with you (the mechanism used to get their backstory into the narrative), maybe bombs crashing, and gunshots whizzing by and some intelligence reports.  Also, you’ll be guided to look for (avoid) the guy sitting on the bench at the park down the street and similar scenarios as you achieve various milestones (time or distance traveled).

Does this not sound cool?  Does this not make you want to go lace up your walking shoes RIGHT NOW and begin the first episode?

I can’t wait!