It's amazing to me what a daily walk can do for my writing life and for my spirit.
And yesterday it kept me from swatting my dog.
I took pictures.
Here's Tanner. Look sideways. I'm not knowledgeable enough yet to turn the picture around. Sorry about that.
But anyway, look at him.
Notice how he is not looking at me. Nor is he looking at the cement pig that we keep on the back porch. (There's a grill back there and my husband is a barbecue nut, hence the pig dressed up like a chef. If you've never seen one before, you're not from the Carolinas.) Anyway he's not looking at me or the pig because he's hoping I've forgotten what he just did. Do you see the little hole where the pig hands should be? Or pig hooves, or whatever pigs have. That hole is there because our pig usually holds a wooden spoon (because he's barbecuing of course! He's making the sauce.)
Tanner ate the spoon.
Actually he just gnawed it to pieces, but he might as well have eaten it.
I was not happy about that. I went inside to take a deep breath, and while I was breathing I noticed again how he chewed off the bottom corner of the buffet I brought back from France. That happened when he was a puppy. But the spoon? He's a grown up dog now! There's no excuse for such behavior.
So I took him for a walk to wear him out. To make him too tired to eat any of my belongings.
This is where we go. It's the Enoree River, and it runs through my neighborhood.
It's gorgeous. When I'm walking, I start to forget about chewed up spoons. I start to think about whatever I'm working on and before long I'm writing new paragraphs in my head and I have to call my answering machine on my cell phone and read them into it so I don't forget anything.
I'm not sure why it works so well, but it usually does. So explain this to me: why is it often so hard for me to stop banging my head against the computer, and get out of my chair and go for a walk? I'll sit there completely frustrated, trying to force good work out of myself, to no avail. What about you? Does walking work for you? What else helps? I'm willing to try new things.
Though I probably should stick to walking, at least to stay in shape, because on the way home from my walk I saw this in a neighbor's yard...
It's a snowball tree. I love, love, love it. There's probably a better name for it, but I'm not a botanist and too lazy to find out. All I know is that it made me think of this:
Yum. I had to run to the quick stop and buy me one. But no worries. I'll take another walk today.