Every sandwich

25 November, 2013    Every sandwich

Beautiful bird at a beautiful lake on a beautiful afternoon

Beautiful bird at a beautiful lake on a beautiful afternoon

This is not a post about Thanksgiving leftovers. Although it applies to them too.

Warren Zevon was an American rock and roll singer in the late twentieth century. In 2002 he was diagnosed with a rapidly spreading cancer and given a short time to live. After his diagnosis he was on David Letterman and Letterman asked him if knowing he would die soon had taught him anything. Zevon said “how much you should enjoy every sandwich.” Don’t take the mundane things in life for granted – it’s all important.

I’m reading The Wisdom of Slowing Down by Eknath Eswaran. It too is about enjoying every sandwich.

I was reading it in the waiting room when I visited my dentist’s office this morning. I looked at the table next to me – you can’t make this stuff up – and beneath it was this:

The wisdom of slowing down...

The wisdom of slowing down…

Reminding me to slow down, clearly. To enjoy every sandwich.

Anyway, I’m looking forward to the holidays and spending time with family and friends and to eating a lot. I could fill a hundred blog posts with the things I have to be thankful for and not even scratch the surface. The mere fact that I’ll be able to enjoy a lot of sandwiches is evidence enough.

I’m thankful for all of my friends who take me around the central Virginia area so I can get lots of fun pictures. A friend moved recently and we began visiting Three Lakes Park in north central Henrico County. They have a beautiful nature center and three gorgeous lakes. We were hiking around the lakes recently and the light was spectacular and I got this lucky shot of a heron:

Beautiful bird at a beautiful lake on a beautiful afternoon

Beautiful bird at a beautiful lake on a beautiful afternoon

I was at the river Sunday morning and a cold front was blowing in. It was crisp and clear and the wind was blowing a gale. The dogs and I were out on the rocks and my hands were practically frozen to my camera. I think the colder it gets, the more the buffleheads like it. This isn’t a spectacular picture, but it’s kind of fun. A flock of buffleheads skimming above the miniature whitecaps:

Skimming a COLD river

Skimming a COLD river

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I think about blog posts a lot. The original title/theme for this post was “In the moment,” inspired by my brother’s admonishment while I hiked at Pony Pasture with my first smart phone. I was speaking with him on the phone, and told him I was using my phone while I hiked so I could take care of some office business while at the river. His immediate dry response was “be sure to take some pictures so when you get back to your office you can enjoy your hike.” It was a good reminder. Be present. Pay attention. Enjoy every sandwich. Happy Thanksgiving!

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About Jay McLaughlin

I am a rehabilitation counselor. I have many friends with autism and traumatic brain injuries. They help me learn new things constantly. I hike with dogs at the James River in Richmond - a lot. I've completed an Iron distance triathlon a year for 11 years. My most recent was in Wilmington, NC in November, 2013. I currently compete in mid-distance triathlons. And work and hike and take pictures and write and eat.
This entry was posted in Dogs, Endurance, Fun, People, Rivers, Smiles (including "dog smiles"!). Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to Every sandwich

  1. Clare T says:

    So much truth in this blog. i find there are times when i “have a lot on my mind” and my trips down to the Pony Pasture seem blurred – like what did i REALLY see, who did i REALLY meet along the way……but as you say, when i truly focus and appreciate my legs, my eyes, ears etc and take nothing for granted – like having a place where i can walk and appreciate the seasons of the river and the connections its ripples have to the trees, to the dogs, to the children, to the older couple holding hands on a bench – when i truly focus and soak it all in – and remember to breathe – the experience is overflowing

    as always Jay – thank you for your beautiful photos & reminders

    and just an fyi – i MAY (with capital letters) have found a new friend – i will find out later today

    hope you & Evi had a wonderful thanksgiving and maybe one day there will be a leaf on the windshield 🙂

    • Hi Clare!
      Glad we FINALLY got to see you – and to meet beautiful Jenna! She’ll get a little more confident as she gets used to the river. She’s gorgeous! I’m glad you liked the post.

      Also, regarding river hikes, or at least for me, different hikes serve different purposes. We come from different places on different days. Sometimes I’m taking in the experience and sometimes I’m lost in my own thoughts – the river doesn’t mind either way! THAT’s my favorite thing about the river. Notice how dogs are the same way? Yay.

      Have a great day and I look forward to seeing you down there again soon,

      Jay

  2. Pingback: Thanks Kathy! | NEWFAZE

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