The weather is still hot and seen from North Mountain Road the distant Catskills are softended and blurred by the haze that rises from the valleys. In the fertile fields corn stands tall ready for harvest. White cylindrical bales of newly mown hay lay about the fields awaiting storage.
The deep greens of high summer are fading to paler, duller shades that herald the onset of autumn. Already the maple leaves are turning and beginning to show their fall colors, orange to red in so many different shades; so easy to spot against the still predominantly green background. The late summer sun casts long soft rays of golden light through the leaf canopy of the part of the Harlem Valley Rail Trail that Mary and I call the Cathedral. Tall trees soar above the trail, leaning together high above to form a living roof.
As we slowly (we are invetrate cruisers) pedal our way down the trail, a red tailed hawk swoops out of the trees above us moving from our left to our right, perches on a branch a little ahead of us, and seems to wait for us. As we close on it, the hawk launches once more flying to the oppsite side of the trail where it alights and again awaits our approach. This goes on for a ways, the bird moving from one side of the trail to the other, patiently waiting for us to catch up before moving again, until finally it flies off on an errand known only to itself.
Aikido in daily life; the awareness of the interconnectedness of all things. There is no separation, only self imposed isolation; no boundries, only the tyranny of ego. Each moment I can choose to close myself off from the wonders of the world around me or permit myself to enjoy their splendor. The practice of Aikido is a way of integration for me; a way of mitigating the societal induced differentiation I have experienced since birth. Via Aikido I have learned to re-connect with the world; to hold myself forth and let the world re-connect with me.