Saturday, January 05, 2008

Tombstones ands Toes

Hello friends,

I hope your holidays were splendid and that if you are writers, you were able to write glorious pages of prose or poetry to satisfy that deep craving in your writers' soul.

Over the holidays I was blessed. In between the two hiccups at the ER that were all (thankfully) resolved and the stomach bug that layed us low for days - there were long hours of pure bliss. Among other things, like enjoying the whole family (daughter Melanie joined us, with her dog, Toby ;o)) playing with my grandsons, cooking feasts, playing Scrabble by the fire, and finishing the final polishes on my next two books (Mazurka and Healey's Cave), I was able to enjoy many long walks in the cold refreshing air of Upstate New York.

Walking has been a great stress release and my recent passion over the past years, especially since I got over my summer-long bout with asthma, and since my mother-in-law's recent heart attack. I'm resolved to continue the walks and eat even more fresh veggies and fruit to help my heart stay healthy. I have a lot of people that depend on me, so I need to work hard to assure a healthy body. Of course I take the camera with me each time, and even if there are no perfect photo ops on the walk, I'm ready!

We'd recently been avoiding the Greenway and much of Letchworth State Park because of hunting season. When the snow got too deep for hiking, we were able to do some great cross country skiing, that is, until the warmer weather ruined all the trails. But over the Christmas/New Years holiday we stuck close to home and walked local country roads.
I walked four miles round trip to the local graveyard on several days, looking for the headstone of the man who built my antique home in 1811. The old place needs tons of work, but I've always been fascinated with the idea of Dr. John and Mary Hunt, the first occupants of my home.

Doctor Hunt lived to be 91 - but some of his grandaughters died young, like poor little Deborah (1 year old) and Nancy (20 years old.)

We did have a few frosty mornings with fresh snow. Here are some shots of sugar coated thistles.

Gordie and Julian (my 4 and 5 year old grandsons) were excellent companions over the eleven days of freedom I enjoyed. Here's a photo Gordie took of me (he LOVES photography!), and one I took of him.

Yours, truly.


See the little smudges on his cheeks? He tried to wash them off, but it didn't work too well. ;o)
After most of the week passed, I started to notice severe pain in my left foot (where the fourth toe from the right meets the joint) and a heel spur reactivated after ten years on my right foot. I'd been ignoring the pain in the left foot for months, hoping to God it would just heal on its own. Most of the time, especially at work on the concrete floors, I'd walk with my leather Clark's and it would sound like this: Ow, step. Ow, step. Ow, step. Now, with the new heel spur, it sounds like Ow, Ow. Ow, Ow. Ow, Ow.

I finally got to the doctor, who educated me. Big time. He told me one needs to change walking shoes every 300 miles. Did you ever hear that?? I hadn't. Seemed pretty extravagent, but then I started researching it and found that sneakers do lose their ability to support your feet after so many steps. He XRayed the left foot for stress fractures or a bone bruise (I didn't hear back yesterday, so I assumed it was okay), and told me to buy new sneakers and not to stop walking! Man, was I glad to hear that. I truly feared being laid up and not being able to have those soul cleansing expeditions.

But today, the Saturday after New Years Day, Allison and I walked the Greenway for the first time in months. It was a little snowy, but beautiful. The sun rose, then gave way to clouds. But we walked for two hours, about five and a half miles. Sure, the feet hurt a bit when I was done, but we got outside, were able to breathe fresh, clean air, and talked up a storm in the process. Those bonding times with my daughter are special to me, and I'm so glad I didn't have to stop. ;o)

Before I go, here is a photo of Hunt Hill Road, a few minutes from my house and named for the man who built our home in 1811.

Enjoy the rest of your weekend, and stay in touch!

- Aaron


Emmy Ellis said...

Oh, wow. That last picture is lovely. I love trees!


Aaron Paul Lazar said...

Hi, Michelle! Thank you so much, glad you enjoyed them. ;o)