Rich Man Walking

August 12, 2011 § 2 Comments

In the morning, early-ish, I like to walk to the end of our pasture and back. Lately, the grass has been dew-wet and too heavy for itself, so I wear rubber boots and roll up my pants. Lately, it’s been just cool enough that a flannel shirt feels right, at least for the stroll down. On the way up, I tie it around my waist or simply carry it. I like the feel of well-worn flannel in my hand.

Yesterday, listening to the noise news as I washed the evening dishes, I was struck again by the insanity of it all. The market is up. The market is down. Up, down, down, up.  And suddenly the tenor has changed to one of fear, if not outright panic. What has changed?

As my walks remind me, the things that matter have not. The ground beneath my feet. The animals that meet the day with me. My family, still sleeping, under a roof that doesn’t leak. The gardens and berries, abundant to the point of absurdity.

Of course, this may not always be true. And of course, my appreciation for these things could quickly whither under the glare of other concerns. But for now, I am afforded the luxury of these appreciations. For now, these short walks remind me of what really matters, and where my true wealth lies.

§ 2 Responses to Rich Man Walking

  • Emma says:

    Hi Ben,
    Thanks for this post. What a good reminder of what really matters.
    I finished your book about a week ago and I’m still mulling it all over. I really appreciated your approach. How tricky to write about your neighbors–but you did it with honesty and generosity. Thanks for that!
    One of my favorite parts: day-in-the-life of the mobile slaughter house. Great to get a hint of what that work is like.

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