Today I walked from The Grove to Emerald Avenue. I couldn’t get a Grab ride and I figured if I got one I would wait for it to arrive and then end up in traffic then I would be stressed because I’m stuck and would be late for my meeting. So I decided to walk. It is a good thing that I was wearing a decent sando (undershirt) under my dressy blouse, jeans and a trusty pair of flats. So I stripped to my undershirt and joined other individuals who plied this path on foot everyday.
I love long walks and use this time to reflect. I realised a lot of us feel that we don’t have a choice on how things and the rest of our lives will play out. We would rather wait for things to happen since this is how things have always been. This is our default. Then we feel stuck as if left with no other option. It’s a vicious cycle.
But we can actually walk. We can choose to move. It isn’t the most comfortable thing to do but it gives us movement and sometimes any form of motion is progress. Yes it is hot outside and pollution just sucks the air out of us but accepting that the walk won’t be a leisurely one helps put things in perspective.
I walked alongside others who do this daily. I am reminded of the need to always find time to walk with the people who I would like to know and serve more. We walked past cars that were stuck in traffic. I was thankful I wasn’t one of those people stressed and fuming in their vehicles. All I needed to worry about were the real hazards to pedestrians – crazy drivers breezing through crossings, pickpockets and potholes.
As I was sweating profusely in my sando, I also reflected on one of my unique gifts. I have that ease of navigating across varied income segments. I can move from purok to posh, barok to baroque and in this case sando to sass. It must be my multilayered experience of growing up poor then studying amidst the elite and now finding myself immersed in circles that I wouldn’t in my wildest dreams have imagined I would be part of. Perhaps it’s also because I am genuinely curious about all sorts of people, from different walks of life.
Overall, I’m happy I chose to walk today. It was a great reminder to always choose that which will move you forward. In your movement you will find further clarity of direction and ultimately solace and strength.
PS: I just need to be better at estimating distance and time. I honestly thought it would be a 15-minute walk. I didn’t realize that it was a 3km stretch. I guess I was using race pace to estimate.