As a child, I loved jumping rope, climbing on playground equipment, or just anything that kept my body in motion. My first job with the telephone company required me to climb floor-to-ceiling ladders all day, as I wired up networks that connected cities and towns. I loved all of it, the big spools of wire, wearing tools such as pliers and wire strippers, and using soldering irons.
I have missed that feelings of physical movement that made me feel better and, I think, kept my heart disease at a distance. The little girl inside of me got such enjoyment from constantly moving. I can sometimes feel that when we travel.
In our last trip to Spain, we climbed up to the Castle of Santa Barbara in Alicante, which sits at a height of 166 meters. We huffed and puffed our way up there. I was quite proud of myself, when we arrived at the top and I saw how far we had come. People were amazed that at our ages, we walked up. We never let on that we forgot about the lift, but getting into an elevator inside a mountain would not have made me a happy camper, anyway.
So, you can imagine my joy at finding a place where I can climb to my heart’s content and need. It is called Barfield Park, and we went there for Douglas to play disc golf. The course requires a lot of going up and down, over and around boulders, which I took as my playground.
Some of the boulders are harder to manoeuver. I am careful not to climb on the boulders after it rains or when covered with leaves. Below is the path from Hole 16 to Hole 17, which gives my heart a much-needed workout, as it is straight uphill.
I try not to put myself in a dangerous position, understanding that my “old” bones would not heal as well as they may have when I was younger. But, there is something about the danger that makes me feel alive. I am not going sky-diving or ziplining, so climbing boulders and jumping from one rock to another are the full extent of risk-taking for me.
There are places to leisurely walk that are free of rocks. Also, there are beautiful trees that entice the little girl inside who wants to receapture some of the fun of her childhood. There are trees full of birds sweetly entertaining me and filling my soul with awe at the Creator.
I sometimes just sit and enjoy the concert. There are all kinds of places for sitting, including old trees and seats made from posts, if you don’t mind the possibility of a splinter in sensitive places.
The older I get, the more I want to remain connected to the little girl inside and keep her happy. Even on hazy days, I want to get out and live life to the fullest, without taking any unnecessay risks (although some of you would consider climbing on boulders exactly that!). I thank God that I am still mobile and have my right mind, so that i can enjoy the outdoors as much, or maybe more, than I did when I was younger. There is something about nature that keeps us young at heart!