Today would have been a good day to do nothing more strenuous than to kick back and write an article that I have due at 3 p.m. this afternoon and then to read a book. The weather prediction was for clouds and wind.
But the winter seems to be finally over. The morning defied the weatherman with brilliant sun, just a slight breeze, and warmth.
So I walked to the market.
Walking to work is not an option for me. Most of what I earn as a freelance journalist comes from a company at 1655 Fort Myer Drive in Arlington, Virginia.
Google Maps says that the drive there would be 1690 miles from here and that if I didn’t stop anywhere, I could make it in one day and two hours. The trip would be a lot shorter to walk, Google says, 1631 miles. But that would take 22 days and 4 hours.
In fact, in the more than three years I have worked for them the only time I went there I took a plane ride. It was a three-hour flight from Denver International Airport to Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport.
Thank technology for telecommuting!
But walking to the market is a real opportunity. The nearest supermarket and pharmacy is 1.4 miles and 5 minutes from here by car. Google maps says that the walk is 1.2 miles and 24 minutes. And my favorite branch of the public library is right across the street.
I decided that walking to the market offers all sorts of advantages.
It saves money. Even now with gasoline back down to $1.93 at some nearby stations, driving to the market and back would probably cost me at least $1.64. I base that on the Business Mileage Reimbursement Rate set by the Internal Revenue Service, which is currently 58.5 cents per mile.
It’s good exercise and better for my back than sitting in the driver’s seat.
It’s better for the environment.
And it gives me a chance to photograph the neighborhood.
Sometimes I ride my bike to the market. But almost like driving, when I’m cycling I am moving too fast to see and to photograph the beauty around me. So I prefer to walk.
The walk started around the lake, past this weeping willow and over the bridge.
At the Table Mesa Shopping Center I came first to Liberty Hardware. Those three spots in the sky to the left of the treat aren’t noise. They are birds.
The shopping center’s linchpin store is one of the Kroger chains in Colorado, King Soopers. Here is where I picked up a few items I needed. Here too I stopped at the Starbucks inside the supermarket for a cup of coffee.
I could have eaten breakfast in the supermarket too. But instead I stopped at the neighborhood cafe. At the South Side Walnut Cafe I treated myself to my favorite breakfast from my pre-low-carb days, huevos rancheros.
Notice the buildings on the hill to the left of the cafe? They are the National Center for Atmospheric Research, designed by one of the world’s greatest architects, I.M. Pei. I first saw it in Woody Allen’s science fiction classic “Sleeper,” which came out in 1973 and never imagined that I would live just two miles from it.
Maybe winter isn’t quite over yet in Boulder. But it sure is a beautiful day.