Sunday, May 29, 2011

The satisfaction of small things

I'm rather intrigued. After years of believing that I'm a terrible runner, that the activity is loathsome, and that I would never do it unless I forced myself to, I am discovering that probably my biggest problem was running too fast for my endurance level. Having slowed it down and built it up a little, I went on a jog yesterday morning that I later discovered, thanks to the glories of Google Maps, was a four mile round trip. This leads me to believe that my goal of a half marathon is not far-fetched, maybe even next year.
But that's still in the future. Yesterday's jog was my first outdoor run since the triathlon (thanks to the very wet weather Salt Lake has been having), and it was glorious jogging weather. The kind where I was chilly when I started but a very pleasant temperature when I stopped. I looped up along the Bonneville Shoreline Trail, past the zoo, and ended at my destination, a little grassy knoll called Donner Park that I often drive by but have never explored. Upon arrival, having just jogged on an uphill slant for half a mile, I rewarded myself by allowing myself to walk along the paths in the park. Coming over the hilly part, I discovered a small playground, hidden from the road, that I hadn't known was there. I love playgrounds because of all the fun memories they bring back. I was such a playground kid- and still am, let's be honest. And when one is by oneself at a park, the best activity is without a doubt the swings.
I hadn't been on a swing in several months, so as I passed the swing set, I found myself veering to the right and taking advantage of the vacantness of the area to pump myself towards the sky. I've always loved swings, and there are some swings that have a special place in my heart. I could write a whole post about that (in fact, I wrote half of it before I realized that it was a huge digression from this post and put it in a Word document for safekeeping). Yesterday morning, fresh off of running two miles, it was wonderful to kick my feet up towards the clouds and realize that I really do love living in Salt Lake City. For now, it's the best place for me to be.
Donner Park is situated at an elevation and location to have a view of a lot of the unique things that make Salt Lake City special. Right behind me was Emigration Canyon, passageway into the mountains and all kinds of glories. Fittingly, of course, if I turned my head, I could also see This is the Place Park, which is not quite a living museum, because the staff do dress up in period clothing from the 1850s, but they don't pretend to actually be people from that time.
Ahead of me spread the whole valley, big and open, with the Great Salt Lake, hard to see because of the overcast day, sprawling behind the downtown skyline. To my left, blocked by a bank of trees, lay Kennecott Copper mine, a huge open mine that is fascinating, beautiful, and hideous, all by turns.
And those mountains- those mountains that I love so much. They are truly beautiful things and I love living in them and learning about them and exploring them. As I ended my swinging, I began to get excited for more opportunities to find new trails, new treasures, and new adventures in my mountains.
I jogged home and stretched in the backyard, where I could inspect and observe our newly-planted garden, and gloat over the rows of carefully planted seed and the tender young tomato and pepper plants. Ah yes, I thought to myself. I am a true botany nerd. How many people take this much pleasure from marking not only the growth of their plants but also the development of their anatomical and physiological features? Not nearly enough.
Hm. I find myself rambling again. Must be time for bed. Other fun and exciting things happened on Saturday, including a bridal shower for my sister Laura, a rousing game of six-square with my family, digging in the dirt and finding worms with my one-year-old nephew, mowing the lawn and accidentally jamming the lawn mower with grass, and sewing half of one of the most unique dress patterns I've ever worked with. But the details would take me too long to type out, so I will just leave you, my readers, with the
knowledge that I had a very enjoyable day, filled with the satisfaction of small things.


Danielle said...

You have the most interesting, productive life and family. I love reading about everything you say... pictures of your activities/dress forthcoming?

hapi said...

Hi Maria, Nice blog! How to add the Glitter Effect Mouse Pointer to your Blog