Chasing Marathoner Kumar – 3M Half Marathon in Austin

I lost track of how many marathons and relays he has run.
I lost track of the medals he has garnered.
I lost track how many pictures I have clicked.
I lost track of the countless runners the boys have cheered and hi-fied.
I lost track of how many miles I have chased him in my car.
I lost track of how my spirit soars as I watch the power of the human spirit from the sidelines.
I lost track of all that.
It is a blur.

However, today was special for many reasons:

  • Kumar’s first marathon after our move to Austin.
  • Kumar shared the trail with 2 friends who were first time marathoners.
  • Adi was in the front row passenger seat helping me and his aunt Rema  navigate the road blocks…so, we can meet and cheer for his Dad and Uncles.

Visiting State and National Parks in Texas

“What do parents owe their young that is more important than a warm and trusting connection to the Earth…?” – Theodore Roszak, The Voice of the Earth

“If getting our kids out into nature is a search for perfection, or is one more chore, then the belief in perfection and the chore defeats the joy. It’s a good thing to learn more about nature in order to share this knowledge with children; it’s even better if the adult and child learn about nature together. And it’s a lot more fun.”
― Richard Louv, Last Child in the Woods: Saving Our Children from Nature-Deficit Disorder

“Let children walk with Nature, let them see the beautiful blendings and communions of death and life, their joyous inseparable unity, as taught in woods and meadows, plains and mountains and streams. ”
— John Muir

Out of all the things I want to leave the kids with… “love and respect for nature” is in the top 10.

There are some things on my bequeath-list that I have to work hard with them and for them.

But I realize now that “love for nature” is something that I don’t have to work hard with them for. It has rubbed off on both of them…perhaps, by just being in proximity with Kumar and me.

We toured State and National Parks in Texas the last couple of days. I lost track. We saw so many peaks. So many lakes. So many creeks. So many trees. I truly lost track.

Just the nature of it all….the nature of nature….so huge….so tremendously wonderful….so awe-inspiring.

I am back in the concrete jungle. But, my heart is still in the forest. It will always be.

Whoever said Texas is flat and boring got it all wrong. Texas is beautiful.

Love for Nature - Ambal's Amusings

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Wildy Chasing Wildflowers in Texas Hill Country

I look forward to every season (including spring) every year.

Oh Cherry Blossom, Thy bring so much Joy to My Eyes and Heart!
Much Ado About a Dewdrop
Scouting for Pictures in Fall

But, all of Austin’s enthusiasm for spring seemed a bit too much to me.

Even before spring arrived, I started hearing the following “Ambal, you are going to have a field day with your camera this spring in Austin. Are you ready to see bluebonnets?”.

Mid-March was kids spring break. We took a road trip to Dallas.  I saw a lot of beauty…green hills, cows, trees in multi-shades…beautiful. 

I didn’t see any bluebonnets. So, I didn’t understand why Austin was going all gaga over spring and these flowers called bluebonnets that were going to bloom soon all around Texas.

I had to take another road trip this last weekend. And, OMG!!

All the roadsides were filled bluebonnets and Indian paintbrushes. Such a gorgeous sight. I couldn’t stop clicking pictures.

As I was taking in all the spring beauty, the following questions started plaguing my analytical mind: How come these flowers are not named purple-bonnets? What would Wordsworth have written about bluebonnets if he had wandered Texas country side instead of chancing on the daffodils near Gowbarrow park?

I tried to quieten my analytical mind and  just be in the moment and soak in the breath-taking beauty of the bluebonnets.

And, that is when the next set questions of popped into my mind: How did the bluebonnets know when to bloom? Who reminded them?

My calendar is plugged in with a zillion reminders. I have at least 3 apps on my phone to manage all my meetings, alarms and other reminders. I even have reminders to “remind me” to nag Kumar about things.

When I took a road trip to Dallas in mid-march, there were no bluebonnets on the roadsides. Within a month, they had bloomed in full force around Texas.

Now, here is the million dollar question:

Who reminded these bluebonnets to grow up and bloom this spring? How does this happen every single year? Like clockwork.

I am amazed at all that scientists do to find intelligent life in this universe.

Have you read about the recent findings from Curiosity Rover? It is mind blowing.

Yet, the bluebonnets leave me wondering.

Perhaps, we are searching in all the wrong places.

Perhaps, intelligent life exists right where we are.

In the form of fragile bluebonnets that know how and when to bloom to herald the arrival of spring.

No calendar on their computers. No apps on their phones. Nobody to remind or nag them.

They just bloom. At the right time. To take my breath away.

I stand here in front of these bluebonnets in utter awe and wonder.

Signed off by,

Less intelligent form of life on this planet aka Ambal