Thursday, November 19, 2009

These Feet!

One of the things I will always remember about our recent trip to Europe was how much we walked! In four days in Rome, we figure we logged about 30 miles on foot – between our hotel and the Colloseum, through the Domus Aurea, to the Trevi Fountain, the Spanish Steps, the Vatican, the Pantheon, Palatine Hill, the Piazza Navona, the Forum Palatine Hill, the Piazza del Popolo, along the Tiber River, up the Via del Corso, across the Corso Vittorio Emanuele, and back and forth on the Via dei Fiori Imperiali. In Athens, we climbed the almost 500 feet to the Acropolis. In Santorini, we passed up the tram and took the 600+ steps up 890 feet to the top of the volcanic cliffs above the sea. Oh, these feet!

I loved every minute of our walking explorations. Fortunately, I was smart when selecting footwear to pack. My fabulous little silver gladiator sandals with heels were reserved for a dinner reached by taxi. For all other city excursions, I had my Skecher tennies, Privo boots, or Privo flats. On one eight mile day, I admit I had to stop at a pharmacy for an emergency purchase of a gel toe sleeve, which saved me from what could have been a painful blister. My feet performed admirably, pampered with afternoon naps, hot baths, and foot crème before bed. Not bad for 54 years old, huh?

Walking in an unfamiliar place really gives you time and the perspective to soak up the local atmosphere – the sights and smells, the overheard conversations, and window-shopping. I have happily dodged scooters in Rome, mad taxi drivers on Sicily, and a stampede of donkeys on Santorini. We didn’t always know where we were going, or even where we were, but we enjoyed each day’s journey immensely.

The point of all this is that I am thinking about health, energy, and mobility – three things I am fortunate to have and to be able to enjoy as an early retiree. Traveling on a cruise ship, I saw many people with obvious physical problems requiring walkers and wheelchairs, and some with no more issues apparent than I myself had two or three years ago (unwanted extra weight and a lack of energy).

Let’s all get up off the sofa and move for our futures! Walk, stretch, eat wisely, keep moving, and participate in life’s little daily adventures. You will be investing in your future health and happiness.

No comments:

Post a Comment