Day 206

Just-so John Celebrates His Liberation

Sometimes we can influence people in ways we might never have expected! Early in MyBigWalk I wrote about Just-so John, who set his I-phone timer and walked for exactly 60 minutes each day along the exact same route through two parks and back home. Sometimes John stopped in his office for something, but generally he liked to stick to his precise route and routine.

Little did I know that by showing him another way — say, by going counter-clockwise around the lake at Edgemont Park, or even heading north instead of south when he left home — I’d be challenging John to think about the miriad of ways he was courting the goddess of boredom and the hobgoblin of little minds.

Today, MyBigWalkers, I am here to tell you JOHN IS CURED.

This afternoon we met on a street corner near my favorite store, and walked willy-nilly around for forty minutes. Ok, maybe it was 42 minutes. But it wasn’t 60 minutes on the clock, and John wasn’t even timing it.

Best of all, the way we decided our route mimicked a game my sisters and I used to play with my father, called “Let’s Try to Get Daddy Lost.” The game went this way: driving home from a store, or a relative’s house, or even from Carvel, my father would surrender the wheel, figuratively speaking, to us. Turn right. Turn left. Do a u-turn, we’d shout from the back seat, and when we thought we had him completely lost, we’d say, OK, now see if you can get home.

My dad always made it home. And Just-so John and I made it to Raymonds for lunch. Just as we were planning!