Thursday, February 20, 2014

Loafing

"If a man walk in the woods for love of them half of each day, he is in danger of being regarded as a loafer; but if he spends his whole day as a speculator, shearing off those woods and making earth bald before her time, he is esteemed an industrious and enterprising citizens As if a town had no interest in its forests but to cut them down!" — Henry David Thoreau, "Life Without Principle," 1854
There is often a struggle within before I go for a walk in the woods. This is especially true when I want to go for a longer walk. A voice in my head reminds me of the many things that I ought to be doing instead. I quickly try to do one or two of those things to salve my guilty conscience. But while I'm doing those things, I get distracted by something else, and before I know it the day is mostly gone and I feel guilty because I did not go walking. Living here in this woods but never hiking would be like a man who works in an art gallery and never looks at the art.

Time walking alone in the woods is almost always time well spent for me. And the truth is that I often get more done when I "waste" a portion of my day out walking in the forest.

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Stopping for tea during a saunter

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