When does a trek turn into a trudge?



When I was walking all those miles in 2017, with the exception of the last two or three weeks, I felt like my feet had wings.  They were happy feet, once I slipped on those walking shoes, and, if I was dressed for the weather, I felt like I could just keep on going and going, like the Energizer Bunny.

I guess I knew those walking days at Council Point Park were winding down, because the bad weather was coming … after all, it is Michigan.  One day I was enjoying 50 degree temps on that beautiful Sunday, December 3rd, and, just a handful of days later, I was outside in knee-high lug-sole boots, hefting the snow by huge shovelfuls and slipping and sliding on the ice that was layered beneath those frosty crystals.

It was a cruel slap in the face.

Mother Nature was relentless, then we got a brief respite (thankfully), only for the Christmas Eve snowstorm to hit, and we’ve been in the deep freeze with snow ever since.

Once that ice and snow began, my daily trek suddenly turned into a trudge of sorts, a journey that consisted of tramping endless laps in the snow-covered nearby parks or using a parking lot.

I told myself I’d take a break from walking this week as I had errands to run and the air temperatures and wind chills through Saturday were going to be especially brutal.  So, the past few days I have been running errands, or, what I would refer to as “traipsing around”, but, not in my walking shoes, nor the hiking boots that I so coveted (but have cast aside until they are broken in some more).  Nope, I am in my tall Khombu snow boots, often taking baby steps on the icy patches.

Yesterday, I was traipsing around Meijer, really racking up the steps, then back and forth to the car, and bopping around, all bundled up, and not really getting any enjoyment out of those steps at all.

At Meijer, the store was in cast-away-the-Christmas-décor-mode and has already filled its shelves with Valentine’s Day décor, clothing, candy, cards … the whole nine yards.  Yup, it seems a tad early, as we’ve barely wiped the eggnog from our lips and we are already thinking about Valentine’s Day.

For those not quite ready to embrace the Valentine’s Day mindset, the store shelves are catering to people who vowed to lose a few pounds and shape up in the new year, as evident by rows and rows of SlimFast products and exercise paraphernalia.

If your resolve was to clean up your act and get organized, or to get your paperwork in order for tax day, there were Rubbermaid tubs, manila file folders and income tax software to be had.

I sure wish the seasons would rush full speed ahead as quickly as the stores want us to.  I’d trade in this ice and snow and bitter cold for the April tax filing deadline in a heartbeat.

My first stop today was at the allergist’s office to get my shots.  Here I reluctantly shed my warm coat, and bared my bare arms for my two allergy shots.  I’ve learned in the Winter months to wear a tee-shirt covered by a warm cardigan with sleeves which I can push up above my elbows … that beats getting stripped down to a short-sleeved top in the cold “shot room” because the nurse invariably reaches into the fridge to get my serum, then grabs each of my arms with her icy cold hands to “stick me” with the needle.  Yikes!

My last stop, after traipsing through a couple of errands on this wickedly cold morning, was to the gas station.  The snow was swirling around, courtesy of a little snow squall that blew up as I drove along Fort Street.  On a lark, I purchased a couple of lottery tickets … the Powerball grand prize is $460 million and the Michigan Mega Millions grand prize is $418 million.  The odds of winning are abysmal, but it made me feel better about this ugly weather, as I handed over the three dollars.  I only buy tickets for these big prizes as I’d be happy to win four numbers, or five numbers – the rest is too much money to comprehend, even after the taxes are taken out.  Hey, I could still keep my job and work from home, but in a sunny and warm state, what few still exist.  This morning I heard that 48 of the 50 states were experiencing extreme cold spells, and the citrus growers are already biting their nails.  I’m glad I loaded up on extra Clementines at the grocery store yesterday

Those errands were drudgery, but, all the trudging or traipsing these past two days garnered almost three miles of steps, getting this year started on the right foot … er, boot.

There was one thing that warmed my heart on this bone-chilling day.  My boss is vacationing in South Africa and sent me photos from today’s excursion to Boulders Beach in Simons Town, near Cape Town.  Who knew that penguins, whose habitat would seem more conducive to Michigan weather, live happily with their brethren on this white sandy beach?

Until today, I had no idea a colony of penguins existed in Africa … I am confident their happy feet TREK, not tramp, nor traipse, nor trudge, along those white sandy beaches in the 85-degree weather.


Yup, you’d be happy too if your footprints were on a white sandy beach, instead of boot prints in the snow … just sayin’.


[Vector image of penguin by Open Clip Art Vector Images from Pixabay]


About lindasschaub

This is my first blog and I enjoy writing each and every post immensely. I started a walking regimen in 2011 and decided to create a blog as a means of memorializing the people, places and things I see on my daily walks. I have always enjoyed people watching, and so my blog is peppered with folks I meet, or reflections of characters I have known through the years. Often something piques my interest, or evokes a pleasant memory from my memory bank, and this becomes a “slice o’ life” blog post that day. I respect and appreciate nature and my interaction with Mother Nature’s gifts is also a common theme. Sometimes the most-ordinary items become fodder for points to ponder over and touch upon. My career has been in the legal field and I have been a legal secretary for over three decades, primarily working in downtown Detroit, and now working from my home. I graduated from Wayne State University with a degree in print journalism in 1978, although I’ve never worked in that field. I like to think this blog is the writer in me finally emerging!! Walking and writing have met and shaken hands and the creative juices are flowing once again in Walkin’, Writin’, Wit & Whimsy – hope you think so too.
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6 Responses to When does a trek turn into a trudge?

  1. Jeez how are there penguins in Africa

  2. lindasschaub says:

    I thought so too – I never knew and I watched plenty of “National Geographic” and “Animal Kingdom” episodes back in the day. I would love to see them!

  3. Ann Marie stevens says:

    Miss Linda…………………..that is quite awesome about learning that those cute penguins live in Africa and that there are people like your boss who go on a vacation to see them

    • lindasschaub says:

      Ann Marie – I was amazed … I’ve watched plenty of shows about animals over the years and read articles and never heard about this colony of penguins in a hot climate like Africa.

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