Who do you walk with?

“May I walk with you?
In silence!” I said.
“Of course!” she replied
But she chattered instead.

My weary soul
Had nothing to say
As our path through the valley
Meandered its way.

Over the stones she
Bubbled and chattered.
Babbling her way
As if nothing mattered.

What fun she could craft,
As she swept around the bends
Her giggling laugh
Seemed never to end.

She said her goodbyes
When she met with the lake
His still, deep wisdom
The better dialogue he’d make.

I have recently spent a couple of weeks in Leeds doing a training course. It was pretty intense. Leeds was where I spent my student days thirty years ago. Oh my goodness that’s a long time. Strangely it doesn’t feel like that, nor do I think I am old enough to have memories that go back so far, but I suppose that is how time is – always moving forward. It was interesting to go back, and I took the opportunity to explore. Needing some nature relief, I took myself off to Roundhay Park and found a stream.

Roundhay Park is one of the biggest city parks in Europe and has more than 700 acres of parkland, lake, woodland and gardens. In my entire student life, I went once. I decided it was high time I paid another visit. So on a bright, but rather bracing Sunday afternoon, I head out on an adventure. However, as any good explorer will tell you, first things first. I needed sustenance, and it came in the form of coffee and cake in the Lakeside Cafe. Suitably fortified, I headed along a wide footpath towards the Mansion, a grade II listed building, built in the early 1800s. But, then a smaller, earthen path leading down to the upper lake, caught my adventurous soul and I followed. Eventually, I wandered my way into the woods and the stream, and I met for the first time.

This meandering young river was just the therapy I needed. A peaceful, soul invigorating walk in the company of a bubbling stream, through a valley waiting for spring. Nature really is food for the soul… while coffee and cake are suitable for the body!!

Where have you walked and found surprising companions?