Down on the Boardwalk

I love taking the boardwalk around Ross lake on my way uptown. Back when I had a job, it’s how I got to work. Now, it’s about the sheer joy of crisp air, solitude and the ability to cut loose unnoticed.

I’m usually a party of one, except for a few dog walkers. In summer, I’ve got bears to think about, but winter? Just ice, snow, and my playlist. I like to mix it up, but the most important feature of the walk is my personal dance off. Is this dangerous for someone with my limited abilities? Perhaps. But picture this.

During my forty minute stroll, I am a sensation. Invisible people cheer loudly as I dance with Kevin Bacon, Ryan Gosling (La La Land Style) and Patrick Swayze. Because nobody puts baby in the corner. Not on my walk. I can throw my hat in the air like Mary Tyler Moore (I do! Every single day!) and moonwalk while Michael Jackson sings in my ear. I’m so good at it.

The best part of walking alone in the woods in winter? If I see someone coming, I shut down the act and pretend to be normal. I like to twirl, too, which allows me to check behind me from time to time.

Though I’d like to be selfish and keep the boardwalk all to myself, this is a gift that must be shared. Who knows how many of you are out there, longing to take your show on the road? I can’t keep it all to myself. Don’t feel shy if you see me there, either. We’ll both pretend that nothing special is happening. We’re not auditioning for American Idol, or So You Think You Can Dance. (Yes, we can!)

I’m especially fond of my Dancing with the Stars moments, where God is my partner. Maybe you don’t think that Franki Valli had me and God in mind when he sang, ‘Who Loves you’ but to me it just fits.

Who loves you,
Who loves you pretty baby? (You do, God!)
When tears are in your eyes,
And you can’t find the way.
It’s hard to make believe,
You’re happy when you’re gray. (the gray thing is true, it’s taking over my whole head. God, you really get me!)

Baby when you’re feelin’ like,
You’ll never see the mornin’ light.
Come to me,
Baby, you’ll see.

It’s my favorite time on the walk, where the Creator and I really let it all hang out, sometimes with the twist, or just a good jive session. He, She, They. My multi gendered God can really boogie. Plus I get a kind of virtual hug at the end, though that might just be my mom filling in.

Thank you, Dave Price, for all your hard work in maintaining this beautiful Flin Flon feature, and to the City of Flin Flon for whatever part you play. (I’m not sure…paint? Gravel? Lights?) Not only am I getting fit and feeling happy, I’m entertaining the ravens and even a coyote or two. And believe me, they’re lovin’ it.

Once again, with feeling, this one’s for the God of the boardwalk, for Dave and everyone else who wants to share their truth with the world, just not with people.

Published by Judith Pettersen

Judith Pettersen is an author living in Canada. She blogs about her life in the north and the ups and downs of being a writer.

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