Sunday in the park

Tuesday, April 4, 2017

Sunday caps off the weekend, so it’s not usually my favorite day of the week. It means Monday is on the horizon and those glorious two days of binging Netflix are almost over. As you can tell, I’m not the kind of person who does much during the weekend. Some people, like my mother, look at the weekend as an opportunity to catch up on errands.

Growing up, my mom would cruelly drag me out of bed on Saturday morning to spend the day in town. She’d take me shopping for clothes and groceries, and we’d usually grab some lunch along the way. It wasn’t that I disliked spending time with my mother. I just didn’t like getting up early on a weekend.

I thought that would change as I got older, but it really hasn’t. Now that I live on my own, I can choose exactly how I spend the weekend. Gideon usually works late, leaving me to watch TV and consider cleaning the apartment. Sometimes I’ll go for a walk, but I truly treasure the solace you feel when it’s just you and the cat and the streaming service of your choice. Saturdays are great. Like many of you, I’d say Saturday is the best day of the week.

Then comes Sunday. As a person who enjoys sleeping in and does not enjoy being reminded that the weekend is nearly over, I can’t say I like Sundays a whole lot. This past Sunday, I found a new appreciation for the day. Gideon and I normally laze around all day Sunday, as it’s the one day we both have off at the same time. This past weekend, Gideon suggested hiking the five-mile trail at Lake Fayetteville early Sunday morning.

“We could get up and be on our way around 7:30,” he said.

“In the morning?” I said.

He laughed, as if I was being cute. I was not being cute. But he seemed so excited about the idea, and we don’t get to see each other nearly as much as I’d like. I coalesced. At 7:30 a.m. on Sunday morning, we were off. Gideon offered to drive, so I snoozed in the passenger’s seat. We arrived at Lake Fayetteville a little less than an hour later. That was when I realized just how long the trail actually was.

Gideon had told me it was five miles, but I figured he was exaggerating a little. He wasn’t. We started walking at 8:30 a.m. and didn’t stop until two hours later. It turns out the trail was 5.5 miles. I’m a curmudgeon by nature, especially in the morning. Gideon is generally cheerful, especially in the morning. When we hit any given mile marker during the walk, he’d smile and ask me if I felt accomplished yet.

“Ask me that when this is over,” I replied, clearly the yin to his yang.

Despite my less-than-enthused attitude, I did feel pretty good at the end of the walk. It was 10:30 a.m., and we had already walked five miles. That’s impressive for any day, but I never expected to do something like that on a Sunday. We drove to his mom’s house, where his younger siblings were just waking up. We spent time with them, had lunch and got back to Eureka Springs by 2:30 p.m.

For the rest of the evening, we watched TV and napped. Those are two of my favorite things to do on a Sunday, but I would’ve been OK even if we didn’t have any time to relax. Getting out and doing something with Gideon, even though it was early and I felt like the protagonist in an episode of “Snapped” for the first two hours of the day, made Sunday feel like a Saturday.

You won’t find much higher praise from me than that. I never thought I’d say this, but I wouldn’t mind going for a 5.5-mile walk every Sunday morning. So long as I get to do it with Gideon, of course.