Tuesday, September 25, 2007


"Let the most absent-minded of men be plunged in his deepest reveries -- stand that man upon his legs, set his feet a-going, and he will infallibly lead you to water, if water there be in all that region...Meditation and water are wedded forever." Herman Melville 1819-1891 "Moby-Dick" 1851 Ch 1

There's nothing like a quiet meditational stroll in the forest. Here's one of the paths through the woods in Stanley Park where I walk on my way to the beach. This Park is a beautiful forested area within the city of Vancouver. Unfortunately, last winter a terrible storm took down thousands of the trees. To this date parts of the seawall are still closed due to the destruction of the storm and wind-falls. Ecologically it was a disaster, and for the people of the city, like me, who love the Park, it was a heartbreak. Fortunately there are still some parts, like this, that didn't suffer damage.

I walk through the woods and then along the path by Lost Lagoon. At one time, this was the place where the poet Pauline Johnson used to paddle her canoe. She named it "Lost Lagoon" as when the tide went out, the water receded. Now it's enclosed so there's always water in the lagoon. When I was young you could rent rowboats and canoes there, but not any longer. And once in a blue moon in winter it used to freeze over enough to skate on it. But that hasn't happened for years. Now it's a waterfowl refuge for lovely swans, herons, Canada Geese and various species of ducks. There are also turtles in the lagoon and if you're lucky you can see them basking on the rocks.

Another of my favorite summer fields trips was to the beach. There are various beaches around Vancouver. I usually go to Second or Third Beach in Stanley Park. But this day I went with my son to Locarno Beach with it's long stretch of silky sand. When he was little I used to take him to English Bay beach and this day, at Locarno, was the first time in years we'd gone to the beach together so it was very special!

I find that my excursions to the outdoors, whether it's a quiet neighbourhood walk, a stroll in the forest or the Park gardens, or along the seawall by the beach, it's a great way to relax and clear out your mind. I sit for awhile and meditate, then write in my journal, and contemplate life. It's always been an excellent way to get over 'writer's block' and come up with fresh, brilliant ideas for my writing.
I tend to be a 'walking writer' so much of my novel has been sorted out while I've been walking about. Therefore, I always carry a notebook and pen as you just never know when the Muse is going to speak to you and you'd better be ready to jot down those words!

"Where there is peace and mediation, there is neither anxiety nor doubt."
St. Francis of Assisi 1181-1226 "The Counsel of the Holy Father Saint Frances Admonition 27"
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Gabriele C. said...

I often walk in the woods along the Weser, or in the Harz mountains about which I post in my blog sometimes, but it takes some drive there. But there are places close to the town as well - I should bring my camera on a walk around the Kiesteiche on a sunny day. Today the weather doesn't play nice at all.

Sam said...

You have some beautiful scenery around - it's amazing how lovely this good earth is. Almost everywhere you look is something lovely. (and then man comes along and paves over it.) *sigh*
Well, I am feeling Pollyanna-sih today, so I'll just keep thinking everything is beautiful!

Wynn Bexton said...

Yes, British Columbia is truly one of the beauty spots of this earth and my city is scenically gorgeous (just ignore the 2 month long garbage strike, homeless on the streets, etc etc. LOL)

No, really! I will be putting up lots more pix now I know how to do it. And I have put some as well as trip pix on my travel blog too.

Anonymous said...

Loved your post about walking in the woods, and I wish you would take your camera along. Would love to see photos of "your" woods. Natalie

Wynn Bexton said...

Yes, those are my own photos. This is an old post though. I have lots more.