I have a long historic pact with my cousin Mike. We would swim each year, in Lake Michigan, on Memorial Day. Time has tempered our resolve and our first swim this year was today. It was still cold. It was probably in the low sixties. Swimming in the cold is a bit more macho than other items on our list like: having a chocolate soda at the Saugatuck Drugstore. History, agreements and family connections are important to me.
I started walking Aunt Joyce’s dog. Carmel is a beautiful, but aged caramel colored Labrador. By doing this, Aunt Joyce gets to keep her dog with her with a bit of help taking care of her. I get exercise walking every day on the beach. There is a surprising other advantage. People come up to me and engage me in conversation. I had forgotten this part of walking dogs. It has been a while since I had a pet.
For some strange reason, it is easier for me to do right for myself when there is some altruistic purpose. It is so good when it is good for me to do good for others. Having extreme restrictions due to nerve issues in my back, it is so good to get out of myself and think about other people.
I walked down the beach with Caramel. It was after my swim with Mike. The sky was misty on the Northern and Southern horizon. The sun had just cleared the trees on shore and there were scattered clouds in front of an even blue gray sky.
A hundred yards ahead of me the sun shown in a bright pool moving toward me fast. Another pool of light formed on the beach and I looked up. The sun was peeking through clouds moving across its face. I wrote this Haiku:
along the Spring shore
now light like a living thing
warms me as I walk