After I drop Jef off at work in the afternoon, I drive straight to the beach. Yeah, I know it’s late November and that the wind whipping over Lake Erie is cold at best and occasionally brutal. But I love the way the wind makes shifting ridges in the sand. On a calm day, I can see my footprints from the day before. On a stormy one, I can’t.

I walk all the way down the beach, past the “guarded area” (not that there are lifeguards this time of year) into the less-maintained stretch covered in all kinds of debris pitched up by the lake and visiting human beings over the seasons. I walk until the beach turns into rocks. I put my hands in the cold lake water and look out at the horizon and I say my afternoon prayer.

Then I walk back. Some patches are firm, and in some places me feet sink unexpectedly. I haven’t found a pattern yet, because the color or pattern of the sand doesn’t seem to be any indication. Some parts are white and crunchy with shells. I don’t really know why that is, either. I walk all the way back, get in my car, and drive home.

When I get home, I put my shoes and scarf and coat away in the closet.

Four goals: go outside, exercise, pray, and tidy. None of these habits totally meets these goals. I still need to do the dishes. I still need to exercise for strength. But it’s a habit I haven’t broken once, not in two weeks. A perfect record! And that’s something, if a very little something, to be proud of.

photo credit: tehusagent via photopin cc