The tracker and the tracked

Where are the footprints headed?  Who do they belong to?

You follow.

Sometimes they seem to stop and you wonder what the owner of the footprints was looking at.

At different points they merge with others.  So many different footprints, all different, each set leaving a different impression, different weight distribution, different shapes.

Then the prints you’re tracking re-emerge and you follow them once again.

They turn this way and that way and you keep following, only to find yourself where you began and your realise these are your footprints.

You know them better now, having seen where they stopped and wondered, seen the others interacted with, seen where they slowed down, seen where they speeded up and where they turned, where they were heavy and were light.

Your qualities, your talents, your experiences all making them exactly what they are.

Through life we are tracking and finding ourselves, tracking others and helping them find themselves.

“But when I began tracking lost people, what had begun as an eccentric habit – following footprints on the ground – quickly matured into an avocation. … I now commonly walk toward a single goal: to meet the person at the other end of the tracks.”

(*Hannah Nyala, quoted in Rebecca Solnit’s Wanderlust.)

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