Exploration is an activity that awakens my soul. Two things happen that fill me with joy; it involves traversing new space. The physical act of moving brings delight while encountering new terrain engages the mind. The action being one of heart rate inducing endorphins whereby one is biking, hiking, swimming, kayaking, running, skiing, walking or any other way to scamper over land and sea. Add to this a new environment and presto…mind, body, and soul bliss.
With traveling comes this opportunity to explore. Harmony ensues.
Awaking early on our first morning in Saint Jean de Monts, Hortense and I don simple running attire and turn left onto the small road in front of the house. The break of day rays pleasant on our skin with sea breeze air refreshing in our lungs alerts the senses. Minutes into the run we cross a road and start on a dirt trail intimately woven with the forest. The closeness in the trees is calming and quiet. Several rabbits scurry into thick brush hoping not to be followed. A favorite dish around these parts; there instincts serve them well.
The flatness of the area as a whole gives way to rolling landscape and stunning cypress trees. Parts of the trail feel like running through a cave, ducking branches to stay untouched. We are motivated to make our way to the beach, knowing it could be around any corner. The trails wander this way and that, down little valleys, up hillsides, and into clearings. We zig zag through the forest.
Running into a quaint meadow our footsteps startle two deer. Startled too, my senses focus on their fluid, supple, agile, and elegant movement. I’m envious of their athleticism. It appears nature is victorious in flourishing the deer’s skill for survival. Within seconds they are out of sight, seconds more out of ear shot. I run on hoping nature victorious in flourishing my skills.