I remember trying to match my father's gait as we walked places together when I was a kid. He had a quick pace and recalled his mother did as well. I'd be lying if I said there haven't been times in my adult life when I was proud of myself for walking slightly faster than most people around me.
The first time I visited Thatch Caye, we took a tour of the island and, after a few moments, I realized I was making two very big mistakes: 1) I was wearing shoes and, 2) I was walking too quickly. The next morning I caught myself leaning into a stride toward the palapa from my room - and I stopped. The sand was cool under my feet; I could hear the breeze again. There are few places on earth where a 100 yard walk can cleanse your mind, where you can let time do what it needs to do without your help. This is one of those places.
The final day of my most recent trip, a few of us decided to go on one last walk around the perimeter of the island. We had rum drinks and we didn't have shoes; we didn't say very much and it took quite a while. It was a clear morning and we stood for a long moment on the south side of the island discussing whether or not you could see the mountains of Honduras way out there.
Since our return, I'm sure we've all unintentionally sped life up - to some degree I don't think we can help it. But there are a few moments each week as I walk across the street to the coffee shop when I remember to slow it down and think about the ocean.