Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Preparing for an Adventure

The Internet is a useful thing. It helps you find fun events from half a country away, plan vacations along the seashore, shows you pictures of things you never knew existed. Still...I gravitate toward pen and paper for my lists. What to take, what to leave behind, what to pack away. What to purchase once I arrive.

Now I am struggling with the goodbyes. How to say good bye to all the wonderful friends I have here. Time is short, but it must be done. Without ceremonies of this sort, I would feel like things were left dangling. There are times when we must grab our coat and walking stick and run out of the house, but fortunately this one will allow me the chance to decide whether to grab my handkerchief and pipe. (Shameless Tolkein references, I know.)

I know I will leave someone out. There are doubtless those who will be offended that I did not call before leaving. May I say in my defense that I have been very ill. That illness is taking far too much time and sapping energy which would be useful for saying my goodbyes.

May I say that Maryland is ever so much closer to Rome. Airfares should be much cheaper, and even though my passport never did turn up when we cleaned out the garage, still, I expect that we may...perhaps...find our way across the Atlantic that little bit easier heading for European adventures. Perhaps Poland for some of that wonderful Polish pottery I love. Or maybe we'll stay stateside and pay mortgage payments and eat crab on the waterfront. Either way, God be praised. He's not done with me. He has already planned work for me to do.

He has given me great friends and through email, Skype, Facebook and free long-distance calling, I expect to be able to keep up with my friends. What happens sometimes, though is that friendship is rather like taking a dip in the ocean. When your head is out of the waves, the water flows around you, but the minute you dip your head beneath the waves, or exit the water, the water fills the spot where you were as if you were never there. Go look at a river. Unless you built a dam, you won't find a sign that you were there before. Such is the way of life.

I hope to find that many of you are true lifelong friends who will have markers in their hearts that I passed this way.

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