At the Station

Waiting for Amtrak, La Plata, MO

It was the middle of September and we stood here waiting for our train to arrive. It was just a few minutes late, but that didn’t matter. We were on our way to the West coast to spend a few sunny days with our son and his beautiful girlfriend.

 

 

Southwest Chief, #3, on a break in New Mexico

Train travel has been part of my life since I was a little girl, and never fails to fascinate me. It is all about the view out the window. Seeing parts of this country that otherwise would be off the beaten path.  Someone else does the driving. You know where you will spend the night (we had a sleeper compartment). And the cooking is all taken care of. (Okay, this time the meals were microwaved since there were no chefs aboard to cook for you.)

We wore masks, as did everyone else, and social distanced the best we could. Having a sleeper gave us a place to stay separate as much as we wanted. (See amtrak.com for more about how they are addressing the pandemic.)

It was a good way for us to travel and so worth it. I will be sharing more in the coming days about our journey.  Even as I think about that I find it hard to believe that it has been over a month since we made the trip.

Here I am, typing this on my phone, watching snow fall for the first time this season. How I have missed the writing, the photography, the creative process. It is as if I packed all that in a bag and left it somewhere…maybe while waiting for something else.

Maybe I have been at The Train Station, waiting for this moment to arrive. I am not the same person who wrote that last post because we are always evolving, changing, growing, searching.

Every day brings something new, good or bad. Every road we take leads to more than we thought there would be. Each choice we make has a ripple effect that affects others.

The choice I’m making here is to “unpack”, to stay a while, share a good story now and then, and simply be myself. Maybe the ripples that go out will be good for all.

Meanwhile, don’t be surprised if I get a far off look whenever I hear a train whistle off in the distance.

 

 

 

 

The Light Along the Path

On the Journey

When I look through the files on my computer and see the photos I have taken in the last five months, I’m reminded of how fast life goes by  and just how much I have experienced.   Our grandson visited for several days, ending with a trip to the St. Louis Zoo.  My garden yielded the most beautiful sunflowers and zinnias I have ever seen.  I participated in two retreats, one in June and one in July, each of them filled with so much good fellowship and rich, soulful time.  We went to see family and family came to us.  I explored old cemeteries with dear friends. We helped a group of friends say goodbye to their place of worship.

My husband and I stood in our yard on August 21st and through the rain clouds overhead we could see the shadow of the moon as it blocked the light of the sun, and then moved on along it’s path.  To be in that darkness and then welcome the light as it returned was profound, even with the clouds over us.  There is a sense of hope I hold inside, knowing that the light is always there.

So many places and people and experiences over these last several weeks.  Life has been full, in a good way.

This image of my friend, a fellow Souljourner, seems to sum up the last few months for me.

Sometimes the path we are on seems clear as we look ahead, as we think of our plans for the coming days, months, years.  And then there may be surprises just over the hill, just over there where you can’t be sure of what lies ahead.   You just never know.

It is a walk of faith.  One foot in front of the other.  Trusting in this mystery we call God to guide us along the path.  How can we know if we are in the right place?  How can we know if our choice was the right one?  Should we just turn around and go back or go for it, forge ahead?

I don’t have the answers.  But I can tell you that the journey along this path is so much better when you share it with friends.  Just like three of us did on a warm summer day at a retreat…when we were supposed to be silent…and mostly we were.  Mostly.

This part of the journey for me includes being a spiritual companion, or spiritual director, soul friend…there are many names for this.  To explain it a bit more I have created a page here.

Where am I along this path?  Still putting one foot in front of the other.  Still wondering what lies ahead.  Still working on that Trust thing, but with each step becoming more convinced that the light is always there.