Taking a walk for the first time in forever

Wednesday, September 23, 2020


I only started walking around again this month, after the loooongest time.


My Japanese colleague, someone whom I catch up with in terms of both personal and professional matters as we are both working on the same candidate pipeline, told me the funniest yet realest thing I've ever heard in this year: "Life goes beyond our work Lenovo laptops, so go for a walk".


Of course the situation in Japan may be different compared to the situation here in the Philippines, where covid cases just seem to keep increasing beyond immeasurable control (I have lost count already). This honestly may have been the sole reason why I've hesitated to go out even for a single walk around the neighborhood.


But a walk surely wouldn't hurt, would it? And true enough, it didn't. Put on a face mask and face shield for good measure, mind the distance between other human beings, and I'll be fine, was what I told myself. Ever so cautiously, I started going out for walks again, and it has since then helped me ease into trusting the outside world again (albeit slowly) and it's definitely a nice change from riding on my stationary bike inside the house. 


On one occasion, I was able to ask my friend out to walk with me. We've been friends and neighbors for the longest time, yet we've been keeping safe and staying home ever since lockdown happened. I don't even remember the last time we saw each other; it was probably Christmas of last year for our high school friend group reunion.. but oh the joy of seeing each other once again! Where to start? As I have exclaimed on my Instagram caption: How could we possibly encapsulate the range of emotions and thoughts felt throughout these months? I was convinced it was impossible to fit all that in one hour of walking, but we did our best. In the end, we just caught up as much as we could, and decided not to pressure ourselves so much. Thank goodness for low maintenance friends. 



Walking the same old streets once again felt like such a visual treat for me; I've walked these streets my entire life, yet it felt like I was getting to know my area all over again. There are now different kinds of plants growing outside the houses and more cats seem to be spotted roaming around, which are all such delightful scenes I was able to capture. 


 

 

 

My favorite time of the day to go for walks is in the morning. I love the feel of the morning sun on my skin, I am like a plant that needs the warm glow and vitality which the sun oh so generously lends to the whole earth. To accommodate more of these morning walks, I have now adjusted my body clock to sleeping extra early, so I can wake up early. Besides, I am a huge fan of getting my complete 8 hours of sleep, so I can say that this totally works for me. 


Morning walks allow me to have a peaceful start of the day, as I observe my neighborhood and surroundings. Let me walk you through some of my favorite spots, and allow me to narrate the moments I've encountered in the past weeks--


A few streets away from my home is a park with a rich tree canopy. I often bask under the shade of these towering giants after taking as much rounds of brisk walking around the park as I can. An aviary stands nearby, wherein birds of different kinds sing and chirp as if to wake the whole neighborhood up. 


Whenever I step foot on this park, it's easy for me to imagine myself being in a forest. Admiring the trees, letting my eyes wander to notice the leaves swaying from way up high, then looking down below at the grass, at the sunny spots, at where I'm standing on.. all I could wish for was for time to slow down, and perhaps it did, for a while.


In moments like these, my favorite thing to do is to just look up, take deep breaths, and drink it all in. It's hard not to keep coming back here. 


In every blind spot or corner on our streets, there are convex mirrors installed to help drivers see if there are any oncoming cars or pedestrians from the sides. This one in particular is my favorite, because it's painted pink, and there are blooms surrounding it. I take the occasional mirror selfies here together with my friends, or just by myself, because why not.

On this particular day, the blooms were thriving much more than in my previous walks. I took the time to the vibrancy; how fortunate I was to see it teeming with life, as if luck was on my side that day. 



Observing the neighborhood as I walk allows me to take a peek of how the day slowly unfolds for others. At times, I hear the sound of people making breakfast (and I smell it too!). Other times, there are those who wash their cars, or walk their dogs, or simply just sit down at their backyard to take a sip of coffee. 

One particular time at 7AM, I kept hearing a phone alarm that kept on ringing and no one was turning it off.. it made me smile and I sincerely hoped that they didn't potentially miss any important task or appointment on that day. : - ) There truly are two kinds of people in this world, the early birds and the night owls, they both fascinate me all the same. 


And here we have my favorite street. It's the widest, and this was where I used to practice biking when I was a teenager, because of the slopes. And where there are slopes, there are chances for feeling the breeze even more, either as I go down the slope with a bike or if I do a quick sprint, I welcome the breeze that greets my face and entire body.



Life indeed goes beyond our work laptops, and such a beautiful life it is to live. Even as we continue the daily grind from wherever we may be, let's remember to pause and... take a walk. : - )

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I write to you mostly Sundays, and sometimes Wednesdays. A happy Wednesday to you, dear reader. Thank you for letting me be a part of your day, and I hope you are doing well.


Thank you also dear readers and fellow writers for following @helloannajo.art on Instagram!! Sending all my love to you, in the form of more art soon. : - )



16 comments

  1. I went on a walk today for the first time in a while, what a coincidence! The fresh air is lovely and if I were around as many flowers as you, I would paint so much more! ♡

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    1. Awesome, it is fate! :") most of the flowers are from my neighborhood, they are definitely a lovely sight each time.. there are days when they bloom so well, yet they often change on the next, so now I try my best to capture them on photo as I see them (well, whenever I have my phone with me!). This time has made us look to the simple and modest things in life to cheer us up, and for me, that would definitely be nature and flowers. Thank you dear for your time spent on here today. :)

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  2. hello anna jo!

    I also haven't walked in forever thanks to this covid...
    well i do walk to the store sometimes, but rarely, usually by car.

    i would like to go on walks more but im in a strange area here where i live with my partner and his family.
    the people here are racist and do not like wearing masks. they are truly hateful people and im honestly kinda scared to walk around on the sidewalks. these type of people will literally be so mad at you for walking near their house. but what is scary for me and what makes me mad is that these people do not want to wear masks lol so whatever... ill walk in my backyard. it can be really beautiful here in the u.s but here in this particular area in california, the people can be really disgusting and rude and make walks less desirable.
    loving this post though, you really inspire me to want to do more in my life than work and play INSIDE lol
    hope ur having a great day!

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    1. Hello dear Kiki! :")

      Wearing masks really is something new for most people I guess, but it's still sad to hear that some don't want to wear it since we protect each other through it. :( spending more time in your backyard I think is much much better, or perhaps you could go on occasional drives for a change of view :)
      Thank you for your kind words always!! and no worries, that is exactly what we've all been doing: working and playing inside !! haha have a lovely weekend ahead <3

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  3. Ahhh, reading this really made me want to go for a walk! I'm lucky that things are relatively stable in Australia now, so I've been out and about going to work. But there's still something nice about strolling around for the sake of it, and noticing everything you see along the way :) hope you're doing well Anna!

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    1. Hello Mani! Super great to hear that the covid situation has been stable in Australia now :) I can't say the same here in the Philippines, but I still do my best to stay home and stay safe as much as possible, with the exceptions of these walks within the village. Hope you're doing great as well, and happy Friday :")

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  4. It is great that you have been walking outdoors again! This whole pandemic really got people messed up. It is good that you're starting to trust the outdoors again. I mean even myself, I don't trust being close to people. As far as friends go, I try to be trusting that they're not irresponsible lol! Love the different views in your neighborhood. Hope you'll continue to enjoy those walks!

    Nancy ✨ exquisitely.me

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    1. Taking walks has definitely helped me trust the outside world once again! It's just been so long, being indoors.. I can't believe I've lasted for months just staying inside and in my garden, so really, these walks around the neighborhood is a great big breath of fresh air!! Thank you for your time with me on here, and totally going to go on more walks :")

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  5. Yayyy outside finally!! I love these snippets! Going out for a walk or stroll is such an underrated blessing nowadays. These photos make me feel hopeful. Always keep safe Anna!

    Much love from Ann
    www.annchoi.me

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    1. FINALLY, right??? and super agree with you; I've walked these streets all my life back when I was younger, so it's great to just be able to do that again especially in these strange dream-like times. Take care and keep safe always as well, dear Ann!!

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  6. What beautiful pictures! I can imagine how good it must've felt to see your neighbour again - even if it's just little snippets, it's so nice to get a little normalcy back!xx

    mia // https://beautiful-inspiring-creative-life.com/

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    1. Hi Mia, definitely, it was great catching up with my neighbor friend. I very much treasure every chance I get to go on these walks. It has also been a way for me to trust the outside world once more, slowly yet surely. Thank you for your time with me on here, and hope you're having a great day :)

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  7. Gorgeous photos! I love how beautiful those flowers are. I have to admit, I never stopped going for walks, because I just needed to get exercise outdoors! It's been so strange seeing the changes around my own neighborhood. Anyway, beautiful neighborhood you live in!

    becky
    http://rebecky.net/blog/

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    1. Hello Becky, I've had to stop going out for walks for months in fear of the virus!! but turns out it's not all that bad. Just really need to stay safe and observe the extra precautionary measures accordingly. :") now that I've started going out again, I hope to do it at least once a week! And truly, I appreciate my neighborhood even more, now more than ever. Thank you for your time with me on here, hope you have a great day!

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  8. Ohh yes... a walk a day makes all the difference. I love to go for walks right at sunset. It's beautiful!

    www.fashionradi.com

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    1. Sunrise, sunset.. always a good idea to go out for a walk during these times :") !! Life goes on, and it's beautiful when we pause and simply observe. <3

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