Magical Places on Repeat
My autistic son plays five-second clips of video repeatedly, a hundred times if allowed. Volume turned high. Certain audio and visual combinations, mixed with emotional memory, scratch neurological spots he needs to itch.
He’s not alone. I’ve played ten-second segments of certain songs over and over again because they strike a certain nerve. A snippet from a Chopin mazurka, a short blast of Led Zeppelin, a dash of Kendrick Lamar. I play on repeat until I’ve scratched that auditory-emotional itch. I drove my dad crazy as a kid by playing one of his favorite record albums—which became one of my frenzied favorites—so many times that he asked me to stop so I didn’t ruin it for him. He was totally right. (I couldn’t help play it one more time before putting the record away.)
We are grateful that our son Sean is no longer completely trapped by the need to do only what is familiar. He has gained the ability to visit new places, after years of that feeling impossible (see background story on the Home page).
Yet there is comfort in repetition.
Like Sean, we understand the pleasure of experiencing the same place more than once. The area above Rodeo Beach, around Battery Townsley in the Marin Headlands, is one of those places for us.
It may merit a short walk one day, a long hike on another. The ocean may be sparkling like diamonds, surfers appearing as silhouettes in the foreground of a stunning background of big ships and rock formations. Or it may be so foggy you can barely see ten feet in front of you, an aesthetic pleasure in its own right.
This week’s Hike Notes, Old Bunker Road, lead us on a one mile path between the Marine Mammal Center and Battery Townsley in the Marin Headlands, offering glorious views of rolling hills and the Pacific.
Please feel free to share. If you’re not able to take one of these Northern California hikes, hopefully you can enjoy the photos! Check the Home page for the broader background story. Click Insights/Hike Update News for inspiring reflections.
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New this week:
Hike Notes 85: Old Bunker Road
Sharing insights and hiking highlights (Hikes, Hike Search by Area) from the special needs caregiver front in San Francisco.