I went for a walk with my hubby yesterday. Although it's November, the sun was shining, the air was warm, the sky a deep rich blue like you only get this time of year. We strolled the streets of our little town, kicking through leaves and enjoying the day like the many other residents we saw.
Unfortunately, I wore the wrong pair of shoes and about half-way through our two-mile sojourn, I felt a blister developing on my heel. By that time, we were in the park, watching the ducks dive for tidbits in the sun-speckled stream and enjoying sounds of nature. Knowing that another mile would have me wincing in pain, if not nursing a bloody heel, I sat down and took off my shoes and socks and did the rest of our trip in my bare feet.
The different textures of pavement, road and grass are interesting. Black macadam roads are warm, but very rough while a macadam driveway or parking lot tends to be just as warm, but smoother. On the cool side are sidewalks with varying textures. Some are very smooth to the touch, while others have been combed to give them a rougher surface and still others, mostly old ones that have cracked and worn through time, are worse than street surfaces. At times, I wandered off the walkways onto the grass - which was very cool to the touch. But grassy areas can be dangerous. One has to watch out for thistles and other nasty plant life as well as things buried in the grass. Fortunately, I was able to make the trip unscathed.
When we got home, I washed my tootsies well and slathered them with lotion - and put those sneakers in the back of my closet, along with other pairs that didn't work out. (I have long narrow feet that are hard to fit). Several have been worn only a time or two and will eventually be donated to a clothing drive. I never wear shoes in the house - barefootin' all summer and socks or slippers in the winter to keep warm, but never shoes. I hate shoes. I dread shoe-shopping. They are an anathema to my life.
But barefootin' is an experience everyone should try once in a while. We are so accustomed to feeling things with our hands, to do it with our feet is an interesting contrast. Take as short walk in your bare feet when you can and notice the different textures, temperatures, softness or hardness of the surface you're walking on. Note them down if you can and use these sensations in a a scene sometime. After all, life is but fodder for our writing.
Today's thought: "I don't see writing as a communication of something already discovered, as 'truths' already known. Rather, I see writing as a job of experiment. It's like any discovery job; you don't know what's going to happen until you try it." - William Stafford
Today's teaser: Do something you don't normally do, like walking barefoot, today. Experiment. Eat something you've never tried before; try something you've never tried before. Or something you haven't done in a long time. Then write a paragraph or two about the experience. Be specific, don't just say "I didn't like the eel sushi." Explain why you didn't like it. Oh, and please, don't hurt yourself. This is a journey of discovery, not danger.