I missed two days of walking this week. Last night on my return, it was as if the garden had been newly dressed—new pots of mums and zinnias lined the walk, palm fronds surrounded the Celtic cross, and my small gift, the verbena which had retained but one small bloom was gone and in its place an explosion of red flowers. The garden’s autumn mellowing was thinly disguised- as an aging beauty who smears on garish rouge and lipstick. The maple had lost an entire branch of leaves, there was a red gash amidst the green of another tree, and I held my coat close as I trudged on my walk, my brain and body awakening after hours drowsing in the purgatory of research codes and excel tables. The path seemed longer and yet perfectly reflected my strands of thoughts and conflicts. I stood at the center, as I have all week, loathe to give myself to the few moments of reflection and rest when there was so much crushing down on me, so much, yet so little of real import. One time earlier in the week, for just a moment, I felt a new oneness with the labyrinth, it seemed to extend exactly as far as my spirit, the final ring of stones and I were a being. Last evening, a tall man with long hair walked into to the garden and gazed at the pond I saw only an outline of him as he stood before the setting sun, I wondered if he was waiting for the labyrinth, and I quickened my pace, yet it still unfolded slowly. For just a moment, I wanted him to want to walk the labyrinth and become my counterpart, but then he was gone and I too left and returned to my excel tables.