Going on a nature walk when the weather was fine was just one of those things that made Jolie a happy camper. She lived in a neighborhood that provided hike and bike trails, something the city did to encourage more people get out and exercise. To her, that was a lot more convenient than driving to the local park, especially if she had her two dogs in tow. On top of all that, the trail was a direct link to her dad’s house, walking took her thirty minutes and got her out in the sunshine, where driving only took five minutes and kept her weight right where it was, clinging to her hips.
As she was strolling along one afternoon, she glanced up at the sky and noticed the clouds surrounding the sun were tinged on the edges with pink and blue…was she only seeing this through her polarized sunglasses, or was this how it looked to the naked eye? Well, she couldn’t exactly look into the sun, so she decided to snap a quick picture while walking, then check it out later at the house. He mom had always told her that a buttermilk sky was a foretelling of rain to come, this wasn’t that kind of sky though, so she felt safe walking her three miles.
One of the things she enjoyed about walking was that it gave her time to concentrate and think of things she needed to get done, or dream up ideas for future stories. She tried to tune in to nature, noticing what trees were in bloom, who still had flowers, which neighbors had dogs, which birds came around the area and who passed her on the trail. Some days she would dream up stories of what she saw on her walk, or make up a tale about what was going on in a particular person’s house-even though she didn’t know them from Adam. It was fun to let her imagination run wild, and sometimes hearing children playing with each other in their back yards, their moms yelling for them to “be nice” would give her fodder for a story, other times she imagined the huge dog barking at her from the other side of the fence was something vicious to be very afraid of, she could really pen something juicy about that.
Once she reached the highway, which was her halfway point, as she turned to start back home, she was overcome with a sense of peace. The day was unseasonably warm, the wind was at her back and she was anxious to get home and see how the picture she took had turned out. With a spring in her step and some rock beats pounding in her ears, she knew she would make it back quicker than it had taken her to get to this point. She often liked to play a game with herself, timing every walk to see how fast she could get it done this time, and racking up lots of steps on her pedometer. Today she’d had her mom on her mind a lot, and she liked to fantasize that she was watching her, enjoying her walk and taking in the sun, that the breeze was her whispering to her that all would be well.
Coming through the back gate, she hurried into the house and pulled out her iPad so she could look at the picture on a bigger screen than her phone. To her shock and surprise, the pink and blue edges of the clouds had actually shown up on the picture, though not quite as vividly as when her glasses were on. She remembered something a weatherman had said about the sun’s rays shining through the water vapor in the clouds make a rainbow like effect. She supposed that was what she was seeing now, which was the logical explanation. Jolie liked to think however, that it was a gift from her mom, as if she knew she would be looking up, just in time to see the beautiful colors of the rainbow shining through, a promise of a brighter future and happier days ahead.