There are fountains across the street from the Ritz Carlton Hotel a stone's throw from my office. I enjoy having them so accessible. Most days one of three benches on the perimeter of the fountains are available. I like to sit, take in the rushing sound of the water and clear my head. As the days that I walk pile up, I begin feeling a new rhythm to these lunch walks. I start at the fountain, pause, breathe, and then continue for several blocks in downtown Clayton before slipping into the quiet of a residential section of town.
No matter what has occurred during the morning, the fountains signal an opportunity to clear my head, hit the reset button, take the walk, then return to the office ready for whatever the afternoon presents. The fountain is visually beautiful. Statuesque metallic ballet dancers strike a pose as the fountains rush around them. I am struck by their beauty every time.
I am mesmerized by the rush of the water. Especially on the days when I feel overwhelmed, confused, or disheartened. As a Midwesterner, water hasn't been a big part of my life. I have a solid imagination, so I can conjure the ocean if I close my eyes and listen.
Recently, author Elizabeth Gilbert posted on Facebook her friend's explanation about the power of water to heal. This excerpt resonated and explained my fascination with and draw to the fountains.
And then go to the water.
Drink the water. Submerge yourself in the water. Touch the water. Look at the water.
Then go back to sleep.
Repeat as necessary, until healing occurs...
It always reminds me of that Isak Dinesen quote: “The cure for everything is salt water: tears, sweat, or the sea."
The fountains quiet the internal monologue that so often threatens to take me down. They tell me it's time to shush for just a little while. I heed their advice and move forward.