walking in sync

Sometimes my morning walks seem to get me in sync with the world around me. This morning was no exception.

I have not been walking as frequently lately because Henry has been spending a lot of early mornings in the bowels of Crystal City. I’ve come to the harsh realization that if I don’t walk with Henry to work, I don’t walk period. So I thought I needed a little bit longer walk today. I am feeling all of those missed steps around my waistline. I had walked by the National Christmas Tree earlier in the week. Today I walked by Congress’s response to the holidays with the Capitol Christmas Tree.

Right around the Native American Museum, I came upon a school group. I heard different shots, like “We’re going to cross the street.” and “I am the teacher!” I wonder how many times they have been reminded that so far this year. Then she pointed out the Capitol. Everyone cheered. Of course their response made me happy. We live in an amazing and beautiful city and all of the rest of you have a wonderful capital, which you probably don’t visit often enough.

Their screams of glee made me think how wonderful it is to be a kid and just be excited about seeing something. I thought about the response of a group of people over the age of 30. Would they have the same response? Probably not. Our government has its share of flaws, but Henry loves to point out that nothing will make you love our country more than reading another’s constitution. Plus it is a big pretty building with a giant Christmas tree in the front yard, barely rising about the countless statues and fountains in front of it.

I walked on around to Pennsylvania and took advantage of the newly opened sidewalk in front of the Newseum. I spotted the loose wires and empty supports that will soon house numerous video screens. Each will display a different front page from all over the country. A few screens had been added and were still wrapped in their protective covering. Someone had just asked on PQLiving.com when the TV screens will be up. Certainly presence will compel a lot of people to walk that way to work each morning.

When I finally settled in to check my email, two of my regular e-newsletters synced up with my walk. The first was from Carrie and Danielle in their Friday Focus. This is a thoughtful message asking people to think about the different actions we make in our life. Their motto is to “Inspire Authenticity.” Today they are sticking up for the little guys. The first paragraph of Kids are People, Too makes a pretty powerful statement:

How would you feel if, when you first met someone new, they said to you, “Are you going to play shy?” or “Looks like someone’s in a bad mood.” What would you think if, when you needed a good boo-hoo, your friend said, “You’re fine. Don’t cry.” And if someone had an issue with you and they let you know about it in front of everyone in the room, how would that go down with you?

Hmmmm… not too happy. The most important thing that I have learned this year is how to identify my emotions and use them productively. That is a pretty powerful skill. What if we started teaching kids how to do that, as well. Be sure to read their proposal to everyone and go ahead and sign up for Friday Focus. It is one of my favorite reads. This summer, I was lucky enough to interview Danielle for Issue Four of MerriMail. This women do have something authentic going regardless of how left field it may seem at first.

Today’s Front Pages – Artist’s rendering courtesy Ralph Appelbaum Associates

Then I received my daily email from Very Short List (VSL), which included All the news that’s fit to map, a review of the Newseum’s web site. No need to walk down Pennsylvania Ave each morning. You can literally scroll over a map and see snapshots of the front page of 581 newspapers in 56 countries. I can’t say that this includes all of the daily papers – where is the Durham Herald Sun and Chapel Hill News? But it was nice to scroll over the Winston-Salem Journal and on down to the Palm Beach Post where Henry had a brief stint in the newsroom. As a Journalism School graduate, I am quite excited and proud. And a little closer in touch with home.

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