Think about one of those places where you go when you want to seek a moment of peace.

I have one of those places, it’s a walking path at my neighborhood park. It is called a labyrinth, a circular, crushed gravel path based upon a design found in the cathedral at Chartres, France.

It’s a daily treat to walk to the park and wind my way around, to the center of the labyrinth and then to trace my steps back out.

This morning was no exception, even despite the chilly air. But I was midway through the path when I saw a cigarette butt lying in the middle of this beautiful place. Then another, and another.

I was slightly disgusted when I walked past the first one. The second one was even more irritating.

But I kept walking.

It took three cigarette butts for me to get sufficiently irked. I bent down to reach for the one, then I backtracked and picked up the other two.

I threw them away, and continued upon the path. It was a small act, but it changed my mindset.

I was more aware than before of the peaceful setting. More significantly, I was on the lookout for other blemishes that could ruin this lovely place.

I have always enjoyed being a patron of the park; until today I hadn’t known that I was three cigarette butts away from being its guardian, too.

It’s pretty simple to step up and make a small change for the better.

Kathy Mangold
Vistelar Group