My friend, Pamela Ward’s has a favorite saying and her tagline for her photography business. Wander in Wonder. Wander is a beautiful word—a word that startles our imagination into wanting.
When I first met Pamela, she invited me to her house, high in the mountains and we did just that. We took off on 4 wheelers and wandered the mountainside. If she had a plan, I didn’t know it. We wandered in forests and streams and meadows. We shed our gasoline powered vehicles, and walked. Watching and yearning for some special sight to catch our eye. It was marvelous and I was hooked immediately and have not been the same since.
It was the first time my dog had ever been off leash in wide open territory. Pamela told me she would stay close, and she did. This photo was taken in the blink of an eye when she perched herself proudly on a log over a mountain stream. She wandered that day with us, and I think she also felt the wonder.
For those who wander, money is not required. The only things needed are a spaciousness of mind and an expansiveness of time. And walking at a pace where observation can occur. Unhurried. Leisurely.
“The root of the word wander lies in the Old English wandrian—to wend, to wind. Wandering is goalless, aimless, directionless—the motion of our steps guided not by a set path or route, but by the inclination of our spirit. Off grid, offline, off map. We may set forth to wander with a light pack or with nothing at all.” Rooted by Lyanda Lynn Haupt
In our wandering we resemble wild animals in their natural state. They move in a seemingly aimless circular projection, never intending to go from on destination to another. It is stepping across the threshold into the wild, into the unknown and uncertain with openness and willingness to explore.
In our wandering we pause, and remember that noticing, even the minute and mundane creates a sense of wonder when mixed with sunbeam and raindrops. Wandering runs similarly parallel to mindfulness, but with wandering, what if, instead on focusing on the present moment, we let the mind wander where it wants to go?