On The Humber (By Danielle)

I confess that I did not walk today. The weather was beautiful and cool. The sun was shining, in fact it was a perfect day — for a paddle on the Humber River. Quite a few people in kayaks, on paddleboards, and various sort of quiet watercraft were out dodging geese, swans, egrets, and cormorants. Somehow these birds seem more benign in the water than they do on walking trails or beaches. I don’t even find the red winged blackbirds as threatening when I am on the water. Perhaps that is because I have only been dive-bombed by them when walking.

Here is another benefit: If everyone is using paddles or oars, we naturally keep the proper distance apart, even when greeting one another and chatting about the BEAUTIFUL canoe that my husband made. Like the hockey stick and the length of three Canada geese, the canoe paddle is another great Canadian measure for physical distancing while engaging in safe outdoor activities this summer. And may well all stay safe and well.

 

Walking in the new reality…

It is hard to believe that just a month ago, close to 30 of us were socializing at my house, pressed close to each other with lots of hugs and enthusiastic close up conversations.  It seems like another world.

This morning, with our beloved cemetery closed, I went out walking on my own. In prep, I washed my hands, slathered on the hand goo, made sure I had wipes and a handmade mask in my pocket, put on gloves and off I went.  I used the stairs, not the elevator, dutifully observing the blocked off space around the doorperson’s desk, opened the door with my shoulder and hit the street.

I carefully eyeballed any approaching pedestrian to figure out how to maintain at least 6 ft between me and them.  It created some interesting dance like moves as we weaved and dodged around each other.  Most people were very polite and more friendly than in the olden days pre-pandemic – lots of smiles, hellos and good mornings. Several people paused as I hurriedly, took a snap of the first spring daffodil I have seen. Of course there were exceptions – the runner who thought she deserved the middle of the path while I clung to the marshy edges and the group of people who hadn’t heard of single file.

We needed some groceries so I ended my walk at our local No Frills but there was a long lineup so I took a chance and added two blocks to my walk and went to the Longos. No lineup, in and out in a jiff.

At home, I repeated my washing routine and then wiped down the groceries. Felt like I had been on a major expedition fraught with danger and I was glad to be back home, even if I am getting a little stir-crazy.

What a strange new world this is. Keep the faith my wonderful Walkers.