Saturday, December 31, 2011

Banjo and the Beach (A Metaphor for 2012)

     I feel very fortunate to live where I do with the pacific ocean one hundred meters outside my front door. It's great to be able to walk along the beach and take in all that nature has to offer. Lately the high tides have mad it virtually impossible to walk along the beach forcing Banjo and I to take the greenway for our strolls. Banjo is our six month old Springer Spaniel and never was there a more aptly named breed. She has boundless energy (the photo below is a rare shot of calmness infrequently seen) and loves the beach walk replete with chasing waves and seagulls.

     The walk this morning looked like it was going to be relegated to the greenway once again but Banjo was itching to get down to the beach. The other problem with the high tides of late has been the deposit of numerous logs making the beach walk more of a challenge. Banjo was not to be deterred today and about a third of the way along the path she yanked hard on the leash to draw my attention to the right and in the direction of the beach. It looked like there was enough sand for us to go down and continue the walk. The other aspect of the beach walks I enjoy is picking up pieces of beach glass. I'm not really sure what I'll do with the collection (and that is a challenge to ponder at a later time) but it's fun to find odd shapes or colors.

     As we continued our walk we got to a spot where the logs and the high water suggested a return to the greenway but Banjo had other ideas. As mentioned earlier she has boundless energy and simply bounded over the logs picking a route that allowed for the walk to continue. I, with considerably less energy and enthusiasm for the route, picked my way over the logs clearly questioning where my leader was taking me. It was interesting that when I looked at the logs as a whole, it seemed impossible. Tackling each log as an individual challenge reduced it to a more manageable task. After some scrambling we got to a clear stretch and I was happy to have made it through the difficult part. I found some great pieces of glass and, at the extreme end of the walk, made the best find.

     The walks always provide great thinking time and I began to wonder how often I may have missed out on something because I ended the journey a little too early or stop pushing when it got a little too hard. Further thinking led me to the point where this seemed almost too simplistic - that is I didn't want to reduce this to the naive belief that simply hanging in there would always guarantee the best piece of glass would be waiting for me at the end. Sometimes the struggle is just that and there are no tangible rewards at the end. What I did realize is that often it is just about the journey and that journey can be a fabulous reward in itself. Especially when you are taking it with a great companion.

     Best wishes to all who read and follow this blog for a healthy, happy, and prosperous 2012!


  1. Great post Tom
    I must admit that in the day to day business of life I often fail to stop and smell the roses that are present along the journey. This is a great reminder from you. Thanks for sharing. All the best in 2012 to you and family

  2. Thanks Johnny. Maybe we should check in with each other to ensure we are on track with taking those moments!