I thought for the longest time that a passion that existed once inside me had long curled up and died. It was a little sad, because at one point and time it had been a rather active passion. However I continued to go through the motions. I have to admit it was tough. Some days were better than others, but alas, there was not even a flicker of the passion I once felt.
Today all that changed.
My new home happens to be situated in what I think is one of the most scenic parts of Zurich. Although in the middle of city, I am surrounded by green space. No matter what time of day I can see people walking and running along one of the many trails right outside my back door.
So I did too. But not before spending many a day making excuses for not lacing up and hitting one of the many trails. Finally I did. Intrigued, once day I took a trail along the stream. Narrow, it wound its way along the twists and turns of the stream. Sometimes the trail would lead to a small meadow with soccer field; another with a BBQ and fire pit, but it was all so beautifully isolated. I still cannot believe the gem I have right in my back yard.
A favourite trail of mine at the moment takes me alongside a steam, to the bottom of a mountain with so many wonderful forks; I still haven’t had to do the same trail twice. Some have cobble stone staircases in the midst of trees. Others with narrow tunnels and running fountains. In moments I cannot help but think minus the occasional sighting of cobblestones and the absence of mosquitos I could even be running through northern Ontario backcountry.
But I am not.
Years ago I loved to run. It was not a hobby – it was my passion. It was where I would ponder things. The longer I ran the more sense the world would start to make. I didn’t do it to be fit, or to win a race – although those were nice benefits – but it was for me.
Somewhere along the way, I lost it. The passion slipped away and I never found anything that really did the trick after. But alas, I found it again, nestled inside the green of Zurich city. I suppose sometimes you just have to keep at something, and sometimes something that you thought you had lost can one day be found again. But what awakens that passion is not the same thing. Before it was about distance and speed – but now not so much. It’s the diversity I have come to love, the sound of water, the tiny size of the trail, its isolation and the painful grade of the mountain that is determined to challenge and exhaust me.