I have a favorite park I love to walk in every day. It has lots of shade, the path is nice and hilly, and the squirrels provide endless entertainment. It’s also a very crowded park. It’s a rare day when I drive by it and there aren’t at least 10-15 people walking along that little path. Most days that I walk it, I’m easily the youngest person there. The AM walkers are the older walkers, the ones who are probably retired or at the very least, don’t have to go into work until later. They shower, shave, don their walking clothes, dab some aftershave or perfume on (I know this because I catch whiffs of it as I pass by some of them), and hit the trail. We pass each other every day, smiling, saying, “Mornin'”, and then go on our way. We don’t know each other’s names, we don’t know what the other does with the rest of their time. But for that hour or so, we’re all banded together for the same purpose – fitting a bit of fresh air and exercise into our day.
I was walking this morning and the sweetest thing happened. One of the older gentlemen stopped me and said, “You know, we pass by each other every day and you always have the sweetest smile, but we don’t even know each other’s name. My name’s Hart.” And he stuck out his hand. And THAT, my friends, is just one of the many reasons why I love Memphis.