On Friday, November 6, 2015, I was near Boston visiting my friend McLean. I had arrived the previous night. He had some morning classes, so I decided to go for a walk around the campus.
It was late in Fall. There were many leaves on the trees, many on the ground, and many were falling. I remember my heart swelling with the beauty. I took a great many photos. After I had walked a loop around campus, I saw McLean going between classes, and he told me to walk over to a nearby trail that leads to a lake.
It took me a while to get out of the campus, not because it was a long way, but because I kept stopping to watch the leaves falling. I walked out the main campus drive and took a left. The road felt old. It was like a country highway and also a neighborhood road, because all down the side of it were houses.
Half a mile down the road, I found the trailhead. I didn't see anyone else on the trail the whole time I was there. I was unprepared for the beauty there. Austin is a beautiful city, but it does not have fall leaves anything like those in Massachusetts.
I entered through a grove full of many shades of orange, yellow, red, and green. I think I actually turned around a few times in amazement, trying to let as much beauty into my eyes as possible. I was walking so slowly because I kept stopping that I never made it to the lake that the trail led to.
I want to remember this story, because I remember I was so happy then, one of my happiest moments of that year, perhaps even one of my happiest moments ever. It's difficult for me to think of a moment when I was happier.
Why? What does this teach me about myself?
I enjoy being out in nature. I find joy in the beauty there. Perhaps it is also important that I was alone. Perhaps that helps me take notice of the beauty.
I remember I was also praying. I love praying and walking, especially in a setting like that. I don't remember exactly what I was praying about, but I seem to remember it centered on thankfulness. I think perhaps that was an important time when I experienced the joy of thankfulness.
Another thing I took from that trip was that I love visiting my friends in a purposeful way, not just stopping by because I'm in the area, but buying a plane ticket and building a trip specifically around seeing them and spending time with them.
That was the first time I had done that after college, and it made me realize that it is absolutely something that I want to set aside time and money to do. I think another reason my heart was full because I was glad to be there visiting McLean.
I wanted to document this to remind myself of this good memory, and to remind myself that this is part of how I became who I am.