At graduation ceremonies around the world, graduates will hear the tune, "You'll Never Walk Alone," from Carousel.
Is that a promise or a curse?
What's so bad about walking alone? Here are reasons I sometimes enjoy walking alone.
1. Pace: It's impossible to really go your own pace when walking with somebody else. Larry Longlegs or Suzy Shortlegs can be a pain to try to match pace with.
2. Getting together: It is hard to find a partner who is ready to walk when you are. Maybe I prefer mornings or after work or lunchtime, but any willing partner has an opposite preference. It gets expensive posting classified ads looking not for love but for a walking partner.
3. Early, late, or never: So you make a date to walk with a partner -- and he shows up late, or doesn't show up. Your schedule gets blown and you don't get in the walking you planned to do. Sally Stressedout always arrives 15 minutes late with some heartbreaking excuse, expecting sympathy, while you've been getting in your walking pacing the floor.
4. The need for speed: I want to build speed, but my walking partners don't want to racewalk. Or it may be a downer day and my walking partners have turned into racehorses. Ruthie Roadrunner or Sam Slug leave you in the dust or hold you back.
5. Tough enough: I want to do some hills but my walking partner whines the whole way up or down, dreads the next hill, etc. Or maybe it's me doing the whining because my planned easy walk has turned into an Everest expedition. Wind, rain, sun, bugs, hills, dust, gravel, traffic are part of the walking experience -- get over it.
6. Going the distance: I want to build distance to prepare for a long event, but my partners never want to do more than 10K. Not a problem -- unless you've carpooled to where you plan to walk. Or the look they give you when you say you need to go another 5K and will do it alone.
7. Event choices: I want to enter a charity walk but my partner thinks it is too expensive or too crowded. There is a great walking event held an hour away, but my walking partner has chores to do and just wants to walk the neighborhood....again.
8. Chatter: Maybe I don't feel like talking, or like listening. It gets embarrassing if you "zone out" and then realize they are asking you for an opinion or advice on the tale you weren't really listening to. When doing a faster walk or hills, I usually don't feel like talking, I feel like breathing.
9. Misery doesn't always love company: On long distance events or speed events, I don't want company, I am concentrating on my own form, my own endurance, my own needs. I don't need anybody else's misery intruding on my own.
10. Eat, drink, and restroom: With a partner, deciding when and where to take a restroom break, drink, eat a snack or stop for a celebration meal on the way home becomes a matter of negotiation.