Do you like to walk barefoot? I spent much of my childhood running barefoot around our farm. Not because I didn't have shoes,but because I preferred not to wear them. Also, we never wore shoes in the house. I guess because of the manure on our shoes.
I still don't wear shoes indoors, unless I have to. But I usually wear them outside. My feet have gotten less used to walking directly on the earth.
But when I do go barefoot, I swear, I feel a sort of charge in my feet. The textures and temperatures and curves and edges. Grass is the most wonderful, but even the roughness of concrete, the dust of dry dirt.
It feels great. I always find myself thinking that our feet were made to touch the earth we walk. Our skin yearns for sensation, and our feet are no exception.
I was thinking about this tonight as my youngest son, playing with toys he got for his birthday, got involved in moving muddy water from a deep puddle to a shallow one. In time he was stepping barefoot straight into the puddles. Watching him I could remember that cool, slick, gritty bottom of the puddles I loved to play in the same way in summer.
Taking him to shower as the sun set, the smell of rotting plants and earthy goo was like incense or something to me. I have been really down, but just the smell improved my mood.
We are not just part of nature, we are natural things. Our skin tries to tell us: feel, touch, smell the grass, the dirt.