May 2, 2010

Walking around the Park in Goiás Velho

Nearly every evening, here in Cidade Goiás, I take my three kids to the park at the end of the Centro Historico. This park is a great place – at dawn and at dusk. The rest of the day it is empty because the sun glares down and the lack of shade makes it uncomfortable and hot. However, around 5:30pm each evening, residents descend on the park for their evening stroll or jog. Most people, including me, walk around the 1km trail. There are just a few people that actually run.

The trail is made of gray bricks and winds along the river and then circles back around the periphery of the park. The park itself has a playground, a skateboard ramp, and a bar. The playground and skate ramp are small, but serve as a point where kids from the town can meet up and play. The middle of the park is empty, making it a good place for little ones to learn how to ride a bike.

For me, it is great that the kids have a place to play while I do my evening exercise. This means that we all can get out of the house and get some fresh air while I unwind from the day.

The bar sometimes has a trampoline and, for R$2 (US$1), the kids can jump to their hearts’ content for ten minutes. The bar also sells tasty meat skewers, and sometimes I let the kids convince me to buy some for them. Most times, however, the kids sit on the skate ramp and play games with the other kids at the park.

As for me, I usually walk about 3 miles. One of these days I’d like to be able to run those three miles, and I sometimes work toward that goal by jogging part of the way. However, the most important part of the evening walks for me is the chance to think and reflect and get any stress out of my system. The fact that I get to walk next to a bubbling river amidst verdant pastures and trees makes this all the more relaxing.

I also think it is great that my three daughters see me and others exercising each day. At their age, they get plenty of exercise running around all day. However, it is important for them to learn the importance of exercise and to see how exercise can be incorporated into one’s daily routine.

1 comment:

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