I went for a hike Sunday with my fiance, one of my good friends and his girlfriend. Over the course of the hike, and the few hours we spent taking in the vistas above Greenwood Lake, I managed to consume nine fermented grain sodas, jump into a frigid pond, and build a suitable campfire. In short, the day was perfect.
It had also been some time since I'd hiked over rough terrain with a loaded pack. In this case, my pack held about 15 pounds of beer and some water, in addition to my everyday carry. I had forgotten just how easy it is to lose your footing, slip, and twist an ankle. Or worse. Especially when you eschew hiking boots for Chuck Taylors like I do.
My tendency was -- as it's always been -- to want to look up and take in the scenery while on the move, but as someone who can't walk and chew gum, that poses a problem. I had to keep reminding myself to mind the trail and feel the variations in the ground. Each footfall was a call to attention, like a focal point, or the thought of only the breath during yoga or mediation.
Eventually, there was little in my head but left foot up, left foot down, right foot up, right foot down, repeat. And so I found my intention for this week: focus. I may have just been walking through the woods, but I was doing some of my best walking through the woods.