That Last Walk

Just over a year ago – as it ultimately turned out – I took my last walk with my very good friend Chris Gulker.

As last year’s post notes, Chris, Lily and I had been walking almost every Tuesday and Thursday morning for two years. Our walks together were such good fun. We solved all of our problems on these walks and came away invigorated. Very much kindred spirits, Chris and I had only met a year or so before we began our walks.

Chris Gulker

When I wrote last year’s post, I was traveling in India – having left for that trip just after having taken what turned out to be my last walk with Chris. I remember writing my thoughts then from far away – about how we’d had such good times together on these morning walks. About what an inspiration Chris was for me – learning new things, sharing our thoughts, just enjoying each others’ company. Thinking back now, also about how he had such patience with Lily, much more patience than I.

And, I especially remember very much not wanting to title that post The Last Walk. I hoped I’d be able to come home from my travels and do a few more walks with Chris. I’d hoped our walk had been just a milestone – two years walking. But, that wasn’t to be. It had been our last walk. When I got back home, we shared new times together as he bravely dealt with the harsh realities of life – but we didn’t walk together again.

Chris was a great teacher for me in so many ways. His zest for life, his infectious laugh and smile, his love for his family and friends – all stand out in my memories. Plus his great talent as a photographer and his love for learning. It doesn’t get any better.

I’m not exactly sure what it was that brought us together – for that first breakfast meeting – but it was something very special. I’ve come to appreciate this kind of special serendipity when it happens. And, to respect it.

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