I conceived this blog in late 2013. We were headed to the South of France on sabbatical. I was working with a colleague on a blogging book and wanted to chronicle the adventures of daily life in Aix-en-Provence, to capture scenes and reflections of a time when we largely traveled by foot and spent lazy days soaking up the brilliant sunshine warming Provencal cafes and squares.
Back then, the word pandemic wasn’t in my vocabulary. Nor were springs and summers when plane travel had largely ground to a halt. Nor did I imagine a day that I could rupture an Achilles Heel reaching for a sliced ball on a tennis court. Slow lane travel was rich, pleasurable and filled with little surprises.
Not so much right now. Our life, and most likely yours, has been diminished in the last six months. First, we hid indoors and then ventured out behind masks. But now the walks and bike rides that kept me sane during this time have also become a thing of the past. I’m living in a surgical boot, hoping my Achilles can heal even without surgery after enduring what I believe was a false positive pre-operative Covid test that cancelled my operation to repair it. It’s not quite as bad as a law enforcement ankle bracelet, but I am feeling pretty shackled.
So I’ve decided to fall back on the philosophy at the heart of this blog: That life is all around us if we only slow down long enough to see it, to smell it, to witness it, to capture it on film. I’ve bought a sturdy three-wheeled kneel scooter. I’m trying to keep my arms strong. And benches abound near the water in the beautiful town of Falmouth, Mass., to which we retired a bit over two years ago.
So join me for this and future installments of “Life on a Bench,” capturing a disabled guy’s view of his surroundings. Today, Falmouth Heights Beach. I hope these bring you — and me — new and brighter perspectives on life in the really slow lane.