Wednesday, September 7, 2022
“Grateful. Happy. Fortunate. (With lots of work necessary!!)
Women friends and even old wisdom advises that a person can judge a man when that man has nothing. Somehow the absence of material comforts shines a light on the deepest, truest crevices of that person’s behavior.
Well, first I suppose there is truth in that advice. But I have found an even greater truth. I have found a true judgement to be had when a person has everything. When creature comforts of food, shelter and all the rest of modern living are solved, that is the truer test of one’s inner core.
A week ago today I was walking through warm lake waters, dragging my feet in the soft sandbars. My memories tumbled with the ghosts of my past. The lake wangled my heart’s contents to loosen, spill and drain.
In returning home, I prepared for a trip to the opposite side of my state. I was traveling to see family and they were excited to see me too!
I had learned my packing lesson as I reduced my luggage by more than half. All of a sudden the advice I had read about combining outfits made sense. I thought it peculiar that I could cut baggage from my first trip when I had only worn a swimsuit, one dress, a y shirt and cutoffs.
Shoes. It was the elimination of shoes! (Please do not think for a moment that I am joking here. Shoes was part of the culprit. Blankets was the other.)
As I arrived, I realized I still was getting twisted around after visiting the city three times. I have google maps for the TL biggest navigational mishaps but I like to feel my way around a bit. Unless of course I am traveling somewhere dangerous, crime ridden. This area was not. I needed to be careful but I could wander.
I love the feeling of exploring. And even more so, realizing I got my sense of direction in this new city. I knew where I could find parking spots. I could try a different restaurant. Or I could return to a spot for coffee.
Some of it was familiar. And I felt joy at these mini discoveries. I loved the lake with my pondering of ghosts and memories. But here I was, in a new spot. Family.
I found a nice place to stay with small, simply appointed rooms. In my own quiet moments, i could indulge myself by watching storms approach from the west while eating soup in the parking lot.
On the drive home, the traffic was not any greater madness than usual. In fact, the buzz of the highway called out to be traveled. Listening to a baseball game, the mikes blended into miles of thoughts.
During my return is when I remembered the first time I realized that men needed to be judged when they ‘had everything’. But what about me? How would I measure up to such a judgement?
“Not very well,” my soul answered my head. I had been moping around a bit or overworking myself to distraction. Life did not present the need to be worried or depressed or especially whiny. (I am prone to the most awful state of whininess).
I drove by gas stations I have seen now multiple times along with the on and off ramps which guide motorists to them. Alternate leapfrogging with cars and trucks with campers, the miles hummed by.
I felt lucky. No, I had not answered all the questions of my existence. But I had a vacation. The waves of the lake had caressed bad memories into its warm-watered sandbars.Just the thought of such an imaginary process caused me to grin with a smile windowed from the soul.
To the west, a great river area holds my family happily with unexpected joys of new discoveries. I drive there conscious of the sensations of recognition and discovery. I navigate highway ramps yet am not always certain I have chosen correctly. Luckily I can figure out, with the help of Google maps, how to circle back!
Hours later, I pulled into the road of my driveway. The wispy poplar branches arch over the drive.
Fortunate, happy and tired. My being has stretched into newness and my ghosts are cared for.
I am happily, gratefully, fifty-seven years worth of luck. May you be the same and more!
Lots of love and a kiss to boot!