Autumn is my favourite season. Besides my affinity for sweater weather and all things pumpkin spice, I appreciate nature’s wisdom. She ebbs, she flows, she sails her own course, reminding me every day to embrace change and uncertainty, to practice non-attachment and non-resistance, and to enjoy this process we call life.
I’ve always wanted to spend a whole afternoon hibernating and immersing myself in nature, especially during the autumn season when the scenery is beginning to become a canvas of warm colours. Couple this with my thirst for outdoor activities and trying new things, and today, I did something different: I joined a hiking group, and together we set out on a journey in Gatineau Park.
Even though the organizer never showed up, fellow hikers and I ended up hitching a ride together anyway. After all, dressed for the occasion and ready to go, we weren’t about to give in to a little mishap, and so we improvised our plans, and boy, did we have fun. We bonded on many levels and shared sweet conversations touching on spirituality, meditation, love, life. For strangers who’d just met, it felt as if we’ve been friends since time immemorial. Sometimes I’d encourage M to listen to the sound of water trickling; other times she’d point out species of plants to me. There were times when we even surrendered our senses to the environment and walked in complete silence.
What’s neat about joining such group outings is, not only do I get to meet people with similar hobbies and interests, but on a deeper level, I’m also matched with those who share similar values and perspectives on life. In fact, the speed at which we all became acquainted with each other today, sharing life experiences and hearty laughs, was quite remarkable.
Meanwhile, I’m thankful for several things: spending a relaxing day outdoors and experiencing nature’s healing effect on my soul; meeting new people, receiving their kindness, and loving them as they are; purchasing children’s delicious baked goods and sharing them with loved ones; and being in the comforts of my own home, all bundled up after a chilly day outside.