Somehow, the “stay home, stay healthy” order has turned me into a philosopher. Or at least a Doctor of Thinkology, like the Scarecrow in the 1939 movie classic “The Wizard of Oz”. While speeding through a half-hour on the Nordic Track earlier this week, my thoughts landed on a profound simplicity: the difference, to me, between journey and destination.
The journey is how we get to where we’re going; the destination, what we’re aiming to attain. Personally, the journey is the part I most enjoy.
But if you’re working hard to get somewhere or achieve something- –
Like writing a book report- –
Hi Lily. Hi 9. A book report is an excellent example. All three of us love reading, right?
And the biggest part of writing a book report is reading the book you’re reporting on. It takes more time than writing a few paragraphs about what happens to the main character and what you liked and didn’t like about how the story was told, even if you have to rewrite the report again with your best hand writing before you turn it in. The report is done, the destination is achieved. How long do you savor this moment before you tuck the report into your backpack or Pee Chee or whatever and go on to the next thing?
Oh. I get it.
What’s a Pee Chee?
That moment the report is done is the merest blink. You’ve reached your destination, but chances are you’re not going to gaze starry-eyed at your not-too-smudged academically mandated missive for more than fifteen seconds, max.
Is that why, after driving around half the day to get to Palouse Falls, we only stayed 20 minutes?
Twenty-two minutes, to be precise. And yes, Lily, I think that’s exactly why. I’ve never been good a sitting still, whether it’s to rest my body or to rest on my laurels. Palouse Falls is a grand sight in the spring, a marvel of nature and Earth history, but there’s only so much slack-jawed gazing I can do before I want to get moving. There’s so much to see and experience on the next part of the journey.
It’s all one long journey, really. Destination is just a place to catch your breath. The few times I’ve received an award I’ve felt startled more than I’ve wanted to stop and bask in the glory of the moment. The process that resulted in whatever is being recognized has long been over. So many new journeys have happened since then!
Yet it’s important to stop and appreciate what’s been gained at the temporary suspension of journey called destination. To smell the back yard roses you battled the hordes of aphids over, to step back and admire the cake you slaved on all morning before resuming the journey and taking a bite.
In short, appreciating moments of beauty.
I’ve been actively seeking these moments, especially during the lockdown. The best, most consistent method I have for enjoying destination is my Bowl Game invention. Each morning, by candlelight, I select the day’s challenge and the journey begins. How and when to make a head wreath? Bake a cake? Walk in the park? When to start the journey and recognize the dozens of destinations that lie within?
It’s getting pretty deep in here.
A side-effect of social distancing, Lily, and I’m sure we’re not the only ones going through it. So, enough Thinkology for today. I started the journey of today’s* Bowl Game challenge with a (masked) trip to the grocery store:
Champagne or Prosecco?
What made me think of this challenge? A questionnaire sent out by a friend several weeks ago, that included When was the last time you drank champagne? I honestly couldn’t remember, so I answered Tomorrow? At last tomorrow has arrived, and I’m bundling the past four days of the Bowl Game into a single event- -Hang patio lights, Make a head wreath, Bake an Italian Cream Cake, plus today’s bubbly (I decided on Cava instead of Champagne or Prosecco). I’ve celebrated the first three challenges in the past three days, but tonight all the elements will come together and take the shape of a party (for one or three people depending on how you count us, plus a dog and 3 cats)!
May I please try some Cava?
Not me, I want the cake!
Yes to both (but Lily, don’t tell your mom, and 9, wash your hands first).
Now, more than ever we wish you a day, and a life, filled with interesting journeys and delicious destinations.
*My weekly blog is subject to time distortion: posts are written a day in advance. So that explains the cake and cava photo, above. . .
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Cycles within cycles, circles within circles, journeys within journeys and not infrequently courageous acts, heroic acts in the small and in the large. I sometimes find when writing or rereading that I am surprised at my own thoughts. That they are evanescent until I catch them in ink. It’s a familiar refrain to me: “I didn’t know I thought that”. I’m riffing on your thoughts, here, that destinations are illusory. We think of them as conclusions or high points or turning points but in this view they are only moments of perspective to view and re-view the journey.
“The journey goes ever onward”.
“All those who wander are not lost.”
“This path was made for your steps alone.”
Thank you once again for the grace of sharing your, now, trialogue.
Whatever our journeys, Tom, they seem to be food-focused more than usual these days. Bon Appetit!
I was thinking yesterday about champagne….. my last was New Year’s Eve….so maybe…I always look forward to your advice and adventures. You, Lily and now 9 have become my favorite “book”. Thank you
Have you tracked down the champagne yet, Roylene? Thank your for your kind comments about the blog, the three of us really appreciate it!