Today, I slept late. In Houston, that can mean that it is too hot outside to do anything. I didn't plan on staying out very long today. It is a partly cloudy day with a small breeze and Brummerhop Park has trees. So I loaded up my hydropak and got started walking about 9:10.
How long would I go? I didn't know. I thought I'd be sensible and stop when my plantar decided to stop. But that wasn't a big pain today. I remembered that one of the reasons I fail at ultra running is that my mind gives up before it is totally necessary for the body. My mind decides there is no point and decides to stop. But there never was a point to my life or anything I've ever done, ever.
I love to sweat. I love to think about the endlessness of ultra-running. But I fail at carrying out the endlessness. So instead of just imagining that some day I would sweat and keep going, I decided that today was for mind training and I'd keep going until I had to stop. Basically, when I ran out of water.
Brummerhop park is a great place for contemplation. I have a 0.37 mile loop. Walking around it really has no goal other than getting the ego to stop doing the math; which in my case takes awhile. Today, I also decided to be here now. Whenever I noticed myself dreaming of some future race, I dragged my mind back to today: keep walking today.
Brummerhop park walking is alot like the monastic cell and St Romuald's Little Rule:
"Sit in your cell as in paradise. Put the whole world behind you and forget it. Watch your thoughts like a good fisherman watching for fish. ... Empty yourself completely and sit waiting, content with the grace of God..."
When I was in the monastery, I learned of the monastic journey where the body doesn't go anywhere but the mind expands. When I think of Brummerhop Park, I do think of mind expansion. More than training for any race, I want the ability to walk around the park endlessly, no goals. Keep walking until the ego quits doing the math. Enforced simplicity, mental awareness, awe of the great eternal beingness.
Brummerhop Park is a symbol of my decision to be a contemplative above all else. As I become a walker instead of a runner or racer, I carry out the contemplative mission. I had a 5 hour meditation today. I lived an entire lifetime today.
My Course in Miracles phrase was: " The Holy Spirit teaches that I cannot lose my soul, and there is no gain in the world." This is what I used to bring my mind back to the now.
Up the boardwalk, down the boardwalk, green lizard, red birds, cicadas, butterfly, dragon fly, rabbit, frog, bug, bug, bug, watch that vine, drink, push the lap counter, cars, trees, swamp, shade, old leather glove, mushroom, ant path, poop, playground, up the boardwalk, down the boardwalk....
I got near to 4 hours and realized I was going to continue past that. It seems unreasonable to start a walk in 81F humid Texas and keep walking past the noon hour. I was hot. My legs in a bit of pain. But I wasn't dead yet so I kept walking.
After 49 laps and just over 5 hours, I sucked air from the hydropak. So, one more lap and go home. A good day. I did what I dream about instead of quitting too soon.