Marathon marvels


Today, the Oakland Marathon ran by my house. This year, as in each of the five years since its inception, I’ve gone outside to watch. Congregating with a small band of neighbors, we rang bells, shook maracas, and cheered. Encouraging those with enough tenacity to tackle 26 miles of Oakland city streets-while most of stood huddled with mugs of coffee in hand-provided us with a communal sense of purpose, and awe. To witness something so far beyond our own capacity (well, certainly beyond mine) gives us hope for a different, better outcome for ourselves and others. As the runners flew past, and our small group cheered, I felt a renewed sense of optimism for all our human potential-whether we run, hop, skip, or jump. Or whether, in that moment, all we really want to do on a misty Sunday morning, is believe that if someone else can do a  thing of marvel, one day, so might we.

Text and photo copyright Rachel Pepper 2016

Seeking calm in the storm

So many of us live in a whirlwind. How do we find peace on a daily basis? One way to do so is to spend time in nature. It is proven that walking in nature, being among trees, and overlooking water, such as viewing the beautiful lake above (near Mt Fuji, in Japan), actually increases serotonin and puts us in a better mood. While you may not be able to get to Japan any time soon, take a walk today! It’s likely that you will feel better as a result.


Photo copyright Rachel Pepper 2015