I love Asha
When my partner and I adopted Asha, a Border Collie, Norwegian Elkhound mix, as a puppy, we had our eye on a puppy who looked like a yellow Labrador Retriever. But during the process, I kept returning to Asha’s photo.
It was her eyes that drew me in.
We named her Asha, a Hindi word that means hope, because we wanted more goodness in these troubled times.
She is full of love, curiosity and energy and eagerly says hello to anyone she meets. She naps on the window bench in the kitchen where she can also keep tabs on the world – cyclists, chipmunks, our mail carriers, anyone arriving for a visit. I was amused by what I decided was her environmental stewardship: she picked up beer cans and soda bottles from the side of the road.
Asha is usually ready for our morning walk before I finish my cup of tea and tells me it’s time with “let’s go” noises and dance. Most afternoons, even if she appears to be sound asleep, she finds me promptly at 4pm for our shorter afternoon walk.
And I love to walk
I’m a walker. I grew up walking in the foothills of the Himalayas. It’s how we got from one place to another. I walked to school, to friends’ houses, to the bazaar, to church, to the hospital to see my sister when she broke her arm. I walked along the Zigzag path, along the Eyebrow, along Tehri Road, along the chakkar. And sometimes I went for walks (and an occasional hike).
Since then I’ve walked wherever I am – whether in a city, on the beach, on a rural road, on a mountain trail.
I love that the slow pace of walking allows me to take in my surroundings. Sometimes I walk to be with my thoughts, to move my body – to simultaneously think and get out of my head.
Life is a path with twists, turns and intersections. Mine has taken me to at least seventeen addresses in three countries and eight states. It has included working with teenagers in Berlin, earning a graduate degree in Germanic philology, teaching preschool, working for a handpainted yarn company, weaving textiles for cooking and dining, and writing about beauty in everyday life – in oh so many forms.
A walk with Asha often takes me to this beauty.