I usually go for a long walk first thing every morning. This is the minimum to do for my health and well-being otherwise i will go crazy. Moreover, i enjoy wandering around in a slow pace, breathing the clean air under the warming shafts of sunlight.
While walking this morning, I got overtaken by a woman who walked her sighthound. Her little son was also following on his first-time-bike. She rushed to get back home, seemed stressed of all her daily duties: house, garden, making food and shopping, kids, cleaning....aaaaaand dog walking! When they arrived back home, which happened to be a mere meters from that point, the dog was to go back into his fenced-in garden attached to the perfectly neat and organised home. The dog looked sad though, as if it would have liked to walk some more and didn´t want to go back into the boring kennel. Poor dog probably only gets to walk once a day. The rest is just "taking it for a pee" every couple of hours, i suppose.
I see such things often enough and it is thus nothing special. This morning though, something bothered me when i was walking. I noticed that everybody else had a dog to walk to. Not me. Hm. I love dogs and would like to walk some too. Unfortunately, i don´t own one right now. But that was not the thing that really bothered me. For some reason i got this odd feeling that i am strange if i walk alone - without a dog! The joggers and car drivers would look at me strangely and probably ask themselfs "why the hell is she walking alone?" as if the only reason for walking was a dog that needs excersise. They would probably rather sit infront of the TV and relax. I can hear them reasoning at a boring neighburhood-party: "Well we got that dog because of the kids and now it´s me taking it for a walk, altough i don´t have much time. " Time for what?
Yesterday I biked around town for getting excersise. The village is pretty small and therefore limited in dispersion. To make a little longer tour, i drove back and forth every dead end street and up and down the hills around town. I even discovered streets i had never been to before although i had spent 15 years growing up here. It was quite enjoyable. At one point i returned from a dead end street and the kids which were playing at the corner asked me "Are you looking for something?". They thought i had gotten lost on the way to my aim. So, biking with no particular aim too seems to be strange to others.
I had an aim but it was not a geographical one. Ok, I am off now to another walk... the one in the morning was not enough, i won´t give up to walk without a dog.
If you are interested, read more about other people who are not following the usual way!