I’ll walk to you, Upland Cress Pesto, because you inspired me.

Pesto and Salad

Somewhere in Austin is a group of dog owners giving writers a bad name. Wherever they are they can’t hide behind their word processing software anymore. Their rollerball pens and refillable mechanical pencils will not keep them safe.

“‘Cause I’m calling you out! Do you hear that?”

I heard tale of these people — these writers — from a woman leading a small pack of assorted dogs at Turkey Creek.

“They aren’t all mine,” she laughed, “just the brown and white one over there. The rest of them belong to writers. Guess, they can’t manage to take their dogs out for a walk so I take care of them instead.”

“But, I’m a writer. Sure an unpaid writer, but writing away at words all the same. My post is due later today,” I wanted to exclaim,  but I didn’t. I chuckled or made some other type of similar sound and led my own dog down a different trail branching away.

Who are these writers, I wondered, that they don’t find inspiration from the colors and perspectives in a place like this? A fallen tree branch blocking your path, its leaves turning orange and red, its trunk layered with green moss. Water streaming over pebbles underneath your feet. Overhead, fern growing up from its damp and shady roots. Or, even simply the sound and feel of your feet stepping on to the different surfaces. Do they work and work without ever looking across their work table to their dopey eyed, smiling pup and say let’s get outta here?

Which is something I say all the time. Not that I always make it to a park. Variety in walking paths is also necessary. Sometimes, I send myself outside to seek out the answer to a filing system at work. Perhaps, feeling lackadaisical about cooking, I’ll chide myself to walk downtown Austin, to seek out an ingredient I’ve no idea what to do with. Even so this leafy green will find its way into the basket, through the checkout, and ride all the way alongside of me home. Walking inspiration was exactly what I needed a couple weekends ago. Not that I said anything quite so sappy as that.

Nope, looking at the dopey eyed, smiling pup and tight lipped cat, “see you later, love ya’,” I said before strolling to Whole Foods where Upland Cress peeked out from its corner spot.

Upland Cress Pesto

In a food processor, chop less than a handful of walnuts, a few pistachios, and 1 clove garlic. Add in 1 bunch of upland cress. Drizzle in enough olive oil to make a pesto consistency, a large handful of parmesan, and some lemon zest.

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