You will see and notice LOTS more of what’s around you when you walk through your neighborhood (or anywhere) rather than simply driving though. This may sound like a fairly obvious observation, but how many actually take the time to discover what’s really out there? If you walk in it, it’s like a completely different world. Here’s what I mean… When you drive in your vehicle, you are surrounded by a barrier which isolates you from the environment as you’re driving through. You can see through the windows, but miss the true identity of the ‘place’ and most of the details as you drive. Speed and the associated inability to ‘take it all in’ or see everything, the isolation in your ‘cocoon’ as you’re thinking of other things, listening to the radio, the inability to hear the environment outside, – they are all reasons contributing to the major differences in really knowing what’s out there. Again, this probably reads as being quite obvious, or, “Why should I care?” I try to walk a-lot these days so I already know this to be true, however I wanted to share (point out) the obvious because I know that not too many people walk much in today’s modern world (compared to times gone by). The reason that I bring this up is because of the reminder I had just the other day. I recently brought in my truck for service and I knew that the process would take several hours. Instead of sitting in the waiting room the entire time, I went for a walk for about an hour. I’ve driven the streets through that portion of town and have explored the neighborhoods there, but what a difference while walking! The ‘feel’ of the place is often quite different from what you might have experienced while driving through. When you’re walking, you are entirely exposed. You are ‘in’ the environment. You are not protected by the walls of your vehicle. You are hearing all of the nuances around you, the sounds. Your speed is slow enough to actually see everything. You see the detail. Your mind is focused on what you’re doing (unless you start ‘daydreaming’). You notice the little things – which all add up to an experience that is entirely different from driving through. I walked through the small ‘downtown’ and then ventured off into a few neighborhoods and down a few country lanes. The ‘flavor’ of the various places felt different from the times I’ve driven through. I noticed a shop or two which I hadn’t realized were there before. I got a feeling for the neighborhoods by seeing the details of the houses, the yards, the things kept around the homes, the signs and clues which revealed somewhat about who was living there. I stopped by a river while passing over an old bridge. I saw someone fly-fishing upstream. I stood there for a while and took it all in, listening to the river, the breeze through the trees (it was a nice day). I continued on and passed another ‘walker’ coming the opposite direction. Ironically we passed again as we each looped around a few streets – smiled and waved as though in our own world, separate from those in their cars… I took in an amazing amount of information about that little area which I would have otherwise had no idea whatsoever. Try it some time. Around your home neighborhood or during your lunch break at work. Take a walk. You’ve driven those roads a million times. When you walk, it will seem quite different. You will see and notice things that you had no idea about before. The place will ‘feel’ different (unless you’ve already done this before). It seems to me that today’s modern world has most of you ‘inside’, or inside of something. Your house. Your car. Your work. The store. All the ‘places’. All except outdoors. Not too many people walk around much. This has led to a sort of fake environment in which most people live. It’s not fake in the sense that it’s not real, it is real (the inside spaces). The real world outside though is a place where many have lost touch. From a preparedness standpoint, or from one of security, you should really ‘know’ your environment. Situational awareness. There is no way that you will ever really know it if you have never walked through it. Not only that, but you will find that the more often you do walk through it, the more you will discover. Do you agree? Do you believe that today’s generation(s) hardly walk compared to years gone by? Is that a detriment? We as humans are generally most always ‘indoors’ or inside somewhere. Is it time to get outside?