Follow My Feet
Theodore Roosevelt said, “Keep your eyes on the stars, and your feet on the ground.” My first night in England I remember looking outside to see how the stars had changed from the familiar Kansas sky. Earlier that day, arriving in London, we boarded the Piccadilly tube to St. Paul’s where we hit the ground running as we navigated our way through the crowd to the City of London Mile starting line. Within minutes I heard the gun signaling us to run, and soon we made our way past St. Paul’s Cathedral onto Queen Victoria Street and then along Cheapside past St. Mary Le Bow. Jet lagged, yet feeling utterly exhilarated, I crossed the finish line at 09:10, an accomplishment and feeling I will never forget.
Another day I will never forget was the day we took a bus three hours to see Stonehenge. It was an amazing experience to be able to see it with my own eyes and walk on the land that others had worked and lived on so long ago. I couldn't help but wonder how many others have stood where I have and how our lives were, for however so briefly, connected by where my feet touched the damp grass and gravel road.
After trekking across nearly all of England we rode the Chunnel to Paris, France. Our first stop was the Eiffel Tower, and after climbing 377 steps, in dress shoes nonetheless, we made it to the second level of the massive iron tower. From there we were tightly packed into a tiny elevator and rode to the top to reach a grand height of 1,063 feet before riding back down and beginning the descent down the stairs marked by the ringing of the iron from the gentle collision of my shoes. Soon night came, and again I found myself gazing at the sparkling stars that matched the glittering lights of the Eiffel Tower in the dark sky.
The following day we made our way to the Louvre where I walked through the halls that housed such a rich history. Strolling through the marble halls my senses were overwhelmed with the beauty that others who had lived long before me created with tremendous care.
On my last day in Paris I walked along the Parisian side roads to the lock bridge Pont Des Arts. Slowly I walked across the weathered brown boards to choose the perfect chain link and hooked on a lock of my own before throwing the key into the Seine. Giving the perfect ending to my time in Europe.When I returned home, I walked outside to gaze upon the stars, but this time I realized it wasn't just the stars that have changed, but unknowingly so have I. So, I thank my lucky stars, and my feet, that guided me through the greatest time of my life, because there is still more to explore.
London City Mile
Pont Des Arts