Thursday, January 22, 2015

Walking Alone at Night

The one thing Ma has warned me against the most consistently since I've been in college is walking alone at night. Because it's just soooo dangerous and apparently women don't have lives after the sun goes down...

But walking alone at night, as risky as it might be, is actually something that gives me quite the profound sense of calm and safety. Rather than being by myself in the dark, I prefer to think of it as being "under cover of night." Why?

For one thing, I'm protected: few people around to look at me, fewer still to notice me possibly mouthing words to myself as I think out loud, and there's no temptation for me to mute myself in anyone's presence. Plus, it's quiet and still: minimal noise and movement to either distract me, overstimulate me, or drown me out. And to a certain extent I find my surroundings to be more mysterious and intriguing: everything looks so different in the dark, it's like you're in another world full of things that you can only notice and appreciate during this specific time.

I do some of my clearest thinking while walking at night. I do some of my most playful and reflective songwriting while walking at night. And I feel most at ease out in public when? At night. Maybe this all sounds nonsensical, but it makes sense to me.

My night walks are missing me. This winter's been mild enough where I'm tempted to get back at it. And it's not like I don't have the time to do so. Just wander, meander, stroll and ponder, by myself,  for the heck of it. Yeah, that'd be nice.

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