… is going, going, gone!
This snowman is smiling. That’s because he didn’t know his fate once photographer Jill Wellington snapped this picture and he dissolved into the hot chocolate – ouch!
But his marshmallow face mirrors mine, because I’m all smiles after tallying up my walking miles. I’ll wait ‘til the end of this post and then I’ll crow about my total share those stats with you.
In the meantime, looking at this cup of hot chocolate with the cute snowman makes you feel all warm and fuzzy about Winter – me too. But, yesterday and today when I embarked on my walk, Saturday night’s freezing rain and a light dusting of snow snatched away some of the joy of these walks – in fact this morning I just stayed in the ‘hood because I knew walking would be slick and icy on the perimeter path like yesterday. The snow and ice is gone now – it’s been pouring raining for hours!
Winter is just snow fun sometimes!
Saturday night’s freezing rain made a little glare ice on the cement and asphalt pathway, then the light dusting of snow made it difficult to see exactly where that ice was. I decided to just drive down to Council Point Park and walk on the grass next to the pathway.
On another note, snow is a tell-all sometimes, and Sunday morning that snow told me that some critters came callin’ between the time I threw out about eight peanuts on the porch, got suited up, then left on my walk. Well, I wonder how I knew?
So, the chickadees may have been scoping out the porch to see if any more cashews were there, but upon a closer inspection, I think these big bird tracks likely belong to a blue jay or a cardinal with a penchant for peanuts. Hope they were able to grab at least one of them. The large paw track told me the Fox squirrel had been by, likely intruding on little Grady’s share of peanuts. That made me mad, and this time I didn’t see him so I could chase him away. Nor did I see Grady, as I would have slipped that gray squirrel a few peanuts on the side.
That little dusting of snow sure changed the Park’s landscape.
I arrived at Council Point Park to be greeted by Parker just as soon as I stepped out of the car. His little bit of attention warranted my digging into the Ziploc bag for extra peanuts for my favorite Park pal, and he guarded that cache of nuts while chomping on a few, then took off to bury the rest of them.
I cut across the parking lot with its low points where glare ice has gathered – grrrr. And what’s this – no one grabbed peanuts from the stash I left on Saturday morning at the drinking fountain? Those slackers stayed up in their nests I guess.
Once on the perimeter path I noticed two things: the asphalt pathway was slick in spots and the police vehicle had already been by checking out the Park – whew, that meant I could amble and take photos without holding up production.
I walked in the grass, and soon realized it would’ve been smarter to wear my hiking boots. Well, surely no squirrels would be nuzzling up against my shoe tips with all those frosty crystals on them.
A couple of my peanut pals did come down from a tree after deciding they weren’t going to let the snow-covered grass prevent them from begging for peanuts.
A hint of sun even made a decent shadow in that dusting of snow.
The landscape is rather blah this time of year, but the bright-white snow freshened up things a little.
I got five miles walked at the Park yesterday, though I sidestepped the slick asphalt path (and hopefully the goose poop that was underneath the snow as well – I kept doing a sole check every lap!)
I made it home in one piece and without incident, my pockets lighter from doling out peanuts.
This morning I decided to stay in the neighborhood and avoid the icy paths and besides … rain was predicted by mid-morn. I got four miles walked, so I wrapped up and put a bow on my 2018 walking miles.
Ta-da! And now the year-end tally.
Well, here it is, the last day of 2018 and just a few hours away from a brand-new year. Did you fulfill all your goals and aspirations you made on January 1st? I did, as far as my walking goal, but not all items were checked on the rest of the list.
So, my 2018 goal was to walk one more mile than the previous year (1,050 miles in 2017), and on December 6th I crossed that threshold since I had walked 1,051 miles. At times in October and November I worried that I wouldn’t reach my end goal because the weather was just plain “lousy” due to intermittent rain, ice, and minor snow accumulation. But, the Detroit area went on to have a great December weather-wise, in fact the third least snowiest Winter in history.
So, all this good weather prompted me to keep on walking and I only lost a handful of December days due to rain. It also helped we had the extra holiday days and my boss was on vacation for a week, so I got an extra mile in each morning.
My FINAL total was 1,162 miles (1,870 kilometers) walked. This was 111 miles over my original goal. Next year I’m going to shoot for the moon and instead of just one more mile walked, I’m going to try and walk 80 more miles … this would equal 2,000 kilometers. Many of you use the metric system, so this will be a fun way to keep track of my miles. I do think this goal is doable because I’m going to start walking in the rain sometimes – not that torrential stuff though … baby steps first. While I’ve never been one to embrace being out in the rain, having commuted to work by bus for many decades and being forced to endure the elements, I realize that I could have walked more had I gone out in those raindrops, instead of whining about them. That said, I still can’t promise I’ll be “Singing in the Rain” like the late Debbie Reynolds …
… but I’ll give it a go anyway.
I may not have checked off those other items on my “to do” list, but I drove a lot of miles in my car (962), and if you think that low amount of mileage is funny, for years I aimed to walk more miles than I drove the car and that was when my total hovered in the 400-500 miles walked range.
I tried out many new parks this year, and took way too many pictures as I walked through them.
This is my 200th blog post for 2018 as well.
So, tomorrow it begins anew … a new year to walk, explore, take photos and fill this blog with tales of squirrels, and birds, and memories too. I wish each of you …
… health and happiness in the coming year and beyond – may YOU always fulfill your wishes and goals.
I’ll leave you with this quote:
Life is more meaningful when our goal is fulfillment rather than gratification. ~ Gayle Lynn Goodman
[Images by Jill Wellington]