Barefoot in Longwood Gardens

Discussion in 'Front Page News' started by Scratch, Aug 6, 2014.

  1. Scratch Barefooters
    1. Pennsylvania

    Member Since:
    Jul 9, 2013
    Message Count:
    501
    Barefoot in Longwood Gardens
    By Scratch


    I was fortunate to spend a day with my oldest brother at a place called Longwood Gardens. It's a remarkable place and quite beautiful. But I expanded its beauty on this most recent trip because I spent much of my time there barefoot. I have seen the flowers there many times before, but this was the first time that I experienced walking over the pathways. Truthfully enough, the asphalt pathways were nothing remarkable, but the areas where there were smooth stone pathways were delightful. So were the places where we could walk upon the grass in the meadow area and the dirt and wood chips in the woods. I felt quite happy to touch upon the many different textures. I enjoyed it, my feet enjoyed it. Seriously. Think about that if you're someone who lives in shoes most of the time. You may not understand it. But think about what it might be like if you were to have lived most of your life in a blindfold, and then about a year ago, that blindfold was removed. At first, the removal of the blindfold would be a bit overwhelming. But then later on, because you've removed that blindfold, you would then be able to see some of the flowers that I'll put in at the end of this blog entry.

    That's what it was like for my feet. They have been learning to see over this past year. They are now the sensory organs that evolution gave to me and gave to you as well, if you should decide to stop putting them into blindfolds.

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    Longwood Gardens is a beautiful place to visit and walk around. Its beauty grows even more so when you walk it with all your senses, including those at the bottom of your feet.

    I was told at one point by someone that I needed to put shoes on. That made me rather unhappy and I didn't think fast enough to pull my smartphone out of my pocket and look up to confirm at their website if shoes were required. The only item about footwear says, "We recommend wearing sturdy walking shoes." I suppose that's good for people who have underdeveloped feet, but mine are well beyond that now. So after looking that up on my smartphone, I then removed the pair of Xeros I had carried with me, and was prepared to handle any more challenges to my ability to walk the grounds barefoot.

    As always, you can read about other thoughts and adventures concerning barefootedness and barefoot running on my blog, Becoming Shoeless.. If you like what read there and want to get notifications on Facebook that I've posted something new, please visit the Becoming Shoeless Facebook page and like it to receive notices in your Facebook feed that there's something new.

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  2. Ahcuah Barefooters

    Member Since:
    Mar 13, 2011
    Message Count:
    392
    That slate walkway in the last picture looks very nice. I always like slate: it has a bit of texture to it that is fun to walk on. Also, and no way would a shod person even notice this, slate has a slightly slippery feel to it, as opposed to limestone or sandstone which are a bit, well, sticky in comparison. I guess I shouldn't be surprised that slate is slightly slippery. It is, after all, lithified mud.
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  3. Barefoot TJ Administrator
    1. Nomad
    2. Presidents

    Member Since:
    Mar 5, 2010
    Message Count:
    16,133
    Redirected to the home page with a permanent copy in the Barefootedness forum. Reading this and looking at the pictures made my feet "itch" to be walking right along side you. Thanks for sharing!

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  4. Scratch Barefooters
    1. Pennsylvania

    Member Since:
    Jul 9, 2013
    Message Count:
    501
    There was one area which I believe was marble and it was incredibly smooth. It was amazing to think of how many times I've walked over that before and never known what it was like to see it with my feet. In some ways, I think that's the thing that so many people in our current culture don't understand -- just how much of a pleasure it can be to experience the different textures that are underfoot, but for most people are undershoe. The one picture you see above me holding a camera is one of when I was taking a picture of a sign that amused me:

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    Just think how much more incomplete the story is to all those who walk at Longwood Gardens in shoes.

    It's these events which are teaching me that human feet are sensory organs, just as much as our hands, our eyes, our noses, our tongues and ears. But I don't know if I've really found an effective way to communicate it to others. How do we do that? I don't know.

    Anyhow, Longwood Gardens is well worth visiting if any of you ever have the opportunity. Hopefully, they'll never change their policy to one of requiring visitors to wear shoes, because there's another side of Longwood that very few get to see. I'm glad that I've gotten to be one who was walked there barefoot.

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  5. happysongbird Chapter Presidents
    1. Idaho
    2. Presidents

    Member Since:
    Jul 1, 2011
    Message Count:
    1,821
    I just saw someone on the SBL facebook page asking some questions about/for a person who just discovered they are diabetic, so I linked to your blog.

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