On the morning of 9/11/2001, I was on mile three of a walk along a winding wooded trail near my first home. I walked with ease — unassisted and in a perfectly straight line unlike my current drunk-like gait. I moved fluidly back then with strength and purpose for five miles every other day.
Two days earlier we had returned home from a trip to San Francisco where we explored every neighborhood of that vibrant and diverse city on foot while hopping on and off cable cars until late each night. It was before I concentrated on steps and balance. Walkers, wheelchairs and scooters had yet to enter my world.
The sun was shining that morning in random spots along the path through heavily leaf-scattered trees. It was early in the day so the temperature was refreshingly void of the stifling heat and humidity that had been blanketing the area for many months prior to that picturesque day.