22 August 2010

Into the Wild 2: "Live in the moment, where your feet are."

Hiking in Willow Creek, Gila Wilderness, August 2010

Willow Creek (looking east)
When I seem restless and discontented, a dear friend has often exhorted me to remember and meditate on living in the moment by asking me, "Where are your feet, Anna?" Yesterday they were in Willow Creek, which winds along the northern edge of the Gila Wilderness in southwestern New Mexico. On Friday evening, as Dad and I set up camp, I strode into and across the creek to gather wood for the fire; these water shoes have proven all but useless for regular hiking due to New Mexico's predominately rocky, thorny, rattlesnakey terrain but carried me comfortably and safely into the water for the task at hand.

In fact, I enjoyed it so much that I took several "water hikes" up and then down the creek a ways, enjoying both the incredible scenery and the deliciously cool water that flowed gently and only occasionally came up to my knees. As I walked, butterflies and dragonflies flitted around me, tiny fish scattered around my toes, and an occasional frog leapt from the grassy water's edge into the water. The shoes' tread kept me from slipping and supported my feet perfectly as I walked, making this my new favorite hike -- not much of a physical challenge but perfect for a morning wakeup.

Black-eyed Susans by Willow Creek, Gila Wilderness, NM, Aug. 2010

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