I have begun photography as a new hobby. So for the last few weeks, I have been spending my Friday afternoons at different park areas in the East Bay. First I have to say there are many beautiful parks in the East Bay and I am a bit embarrassed to admit I hadn’t been to most of them before this. Today I was at Point Isabel which is an extremely popular place for those with dogs. I was one of only a few people wandering there without a dog.

As I walked around taking many dog photos I noticed how relaxed everyone was. For the most part, people were enjoying their dogs and the walk. A few had their music on too but very few were on the phone. It was really lovely. It made me think that walking your dog must be one of the few quiet joys left in an urban area. I live in a beautiful place but it is still a city. And people move fast and are often exceedingly impatient. Our entire culture is built on busy. People brag about how busy they are. I suspect for many it helps them feel worthy. Being quiet means being unproductive which is not a good thing.

But those dog walkers they get to be productive by walking their pets and also engage in the moment and the joy of walking around a beautiful park on a sunny day in a leisurely manner. It’s a win-win. For me, photography has been serving a similar purpose. Since I am new at it I am trying to practice every week. That motivates me to get out to new places and take pictures of different things. I am a person who very much tries not to engage in the culture of busy but still it is having this new hobby that has motivated me to find this quiet time every week.  None of us should need an excuse like a dog or a camera to do it. On the other hand, if the dog or camera works then more power to you and it. Just find a way to create some quiet and mindful time in your week and extra bonus points if you can do it outside. Find Your Quiet.