This morning is the 5K Walk/Run fundraiser for Prospect Park. I'm early and cheerful volunteers serve up water and bagels. I watch the runners come across the finish line and enjoy the warmth and the smell of autumn in this wonderful refuge nestled in the middle of the Park Slope neighborhood of Brooklyn.
Families and individuals take to the Park for this annual fundraiser and this year has special meaning. With Hurricane Sandy ripping hundreds of trees from the ground, funds raised will help with the clean up efforts. And with the New York Marathon cancelled, many of those runners are now converging to participate in this event. An unexpected and welcome surprise for Prospect Park!
Today I walk for all the trees that remain, for the trees that suffered but will survive, and for the trees that were or will have to be destroyed. Trees witness our lives and I am here to bear witness to theirs.
I could walk this 5k in an hour. But today, on this beautiful autumn day, with the slight breeze sending the red, orange, brown, green and yellow leaves dancing across the expansive space of lawn, the sun beaming brightly down through the tree branches and the laughter and energy of the other walkers and runners mixing with my own, I'm going to take my time, breathe deeply and give thanks for the trees that remain standing.
With their roots planted firmly, these are New York's sentinels, reaching skyward and whispering in to the passing wind, "we are here, we will remain".
Thanks to those of you who sponsored my walk
in support of the Park!