I don’t care what anyone says: I believe that Henry David Thoreau was a romantic. True, he certainly preferred his solitude over the company of others (although he and his brother at one time loved a woman named Ellen, enough to want to marry her, and it’s rumored that Thoreau loved Lidian Emerson), but I believe he was a romantic in the way he felt about nature.
At least he swept me away yesterday (probably not unlike the way he swept away Louisa May Alcott). On the way to the gym for my workout, I listened to his essay entitled “Walking” which prompted me to skip the gym and take a walk over at the dog field at Tufts Veterinary School. Thoreau made the outdoors sound so compelling that I couldn’t imagine shutting myself up in a gym when I could experience the glorious outdoors. After all, I prided myself on being a lover of nature, right?
Ah, you have to love audio books! I strapped on my iTouch and began listening to part 2 of “Walking” as I began my walk. Everything was lovely at first – tall green grass with birds diving to and fro, cool breezes, this was living! Until, I stumbled on the rough path and fell down, nearly spraining my ankle! The reading of “Walking” was blaring in my head as I massaged both feet (both of which give me pain most of the time anyway) and wondered if I would be able to continue, let alone get back to my car! Under my breath I found myself muttering, “Thanks a lot, Thoreau!”
I did manage to continue my walk, trying to get back in the spirit of what I was hearing. All went well until I got into the woodsy part of the trip and the mosquitoes had me in their cross hairs! At one point there was a swarm around me and I wondered what Thoreau must have used to keep the mosquitoes at bay.
I got back to the meadow and completed my walk just as the audio book finished. My little excellent adventure!
I must admit though, I enjoyed the walk and would like to do it again, feet permitting!
I’m reading through the printout of “Walking” now so I can take a closer look and will write more when I finish it.
I still think he’s a romantic and I’ll tell you why soon . . .