Tuesday, November 9, 2010 arrived with a clear early morning that promised to become a chilly, sunny, and typically autumn day. I zipped my coat, buckled my helmet strap, unlocked my bike, and headed off to work. A few minutes later, a garbage truck crossed a bike lane to make a right turn. I was in that bike lane. The tires of the truck crushed my left leg and caused other internal injuries. An amazing team of trauma surgeons saved my life, but they had to amputate my leg to do so.

The journey of a thousand miles begins with one step. Confucius.

In July 2011, I set off to walk a thousand miles as an above-knee amputee in my new prosthesis. The journey has held more twists, turns, and detours than I ever imagined.

I reached Mile 1000 on March 30, 2013.

But of course, that wasn't the end.

I'll keep walking!

Tuesday, September 1, 2015

Small Happiness

If you want small happiness, wake up early.

Insert Vermont sunrise here...

Mile Marker 3117:   If you want small happiness, TAKE a kindergartner to school.  Feel her fragile hand in yours as you cross the street.  Set her free when her shoulders bunch with excitement.  Watch her play tag with her shadow.

SPEND a weekend with your sister.  Stay up late watching American Ninja Warrior and eating Applebee's take-out on the bedspread.

READ for a few hours.  Yes, hours.  Read aloud.  Read inside your head (says the new kindergartner).  Find a little nephew to sit next to you.  Turn lots and lots of pages.

LEAVE the shopping list behind.  Take your niece to the store just to pick out a toy.  Don't rush, even if she takes ridiculously long.  Let her huge eyes crawl over every doll on every shelf.  Let her dance up and down the aisle.  Let other shoppers laugh.

GO SEARCHING for a missing cat.  And find it.  Be pleasantly surprised that the teenage boys who lured you onto the trail didn't chase you down, or mug you, or drag you away.  They really just wanted to help an injured cat.

BELIEVE in the goodness of those around you.

And ENJOY the breathtaking hike along the way,
even if you forgot your trekking poles!

On the way home, THANK the airport TSA agent for understanding, before you tell him, that an Allen wrench is a "necessary item."  Then thank him again when he discovers your too-big bottle of maple syrup and -- instead of tossing it in the trash -- walks 30 feet beyond security to hand it off to your sister, waiting behind the line.

This summer, happiness has been kind of hard to find.   For me anyway.

Funny how a tiny trip in two short days can turn things around.

I'll keep this post short too.

(Like the shortest and happiest
Vermonters I know!)

If you want to find happiness, START SMALL.
Look often.  And early.
Blink and you might miss it.

Insert newly fallen Vermont leaves here...

Hello September.  Let's see what you have in store.


  1. A great post, as always. A great reminder that we can find happiness in the simplest thing. Thank you.