Well with every hello there has to be a goodbye. It was kind of quiet in the car ride to the airport, a somewhat different energy was in this car ride compared to others. Over the past 6 days we travelled to all theses wonderful and picturesque areas in Wales and England. This car ride was different, we already saw this point of interest, although it was at night (3:30 am we had a little delay when we arrived) we knew exactly what to expect.
My son sitting in the back seat with his 17-year-old cousin – began to express his philosophy in only the way he can. Good – byes are always difficult but sometimes if we attach some hope to the next encounter it feels a little easier. There was a little discussion the night before that maybe my brother – in law and his family would go see his parents in Florida and maybe we could meet up with them. The other option was that maybe they would come to our house next summer. Either way we wouldn’t see them for a while.
On the way to the airport, Fraser broke the silence with one of his philosophical moments; he said to his 17-year-old cousin “rather than hoping to see you next summer, we should hope to see each other at christmas – then we won’t have to hope as long.”
You are in control of your hope so use it to your advantage, use it often and make sure the expiry date is short.
The amazing thing about anxiousness is it can be in the presence of good or bad events. It will be the first time in approximately – forever that I have left my practice for three weeks. I am excited about my journey but remain apprehensive about the time I will be gone. it’s not that I don’t believe that all will be fine when I get back – it has more to do with let go. Learning to appreciate that when things feel awkward and sometimes uneasy it’s probably a time of personal growth and relection.
Well just an update – the Burlington Thunder lost in a shootout in the finals to a team from Spain. We did score a goal that was disallowed – don’t want to be complaining, but if I am able to attach the link I will post it. The shootout was thrilling they scored two goals and we missed all of ours (Fraser hit the post -blog post to come). The boys and their parents were able to experience victory 48 hours later when we all spilled into the streets and into the town square to celebrate Spain’s world cup victory. None of us will ever forget the experience. Win or lose our lives have been changed forever.
Correction to game one we beat a team from spain – we play Peru tomorrow.
As for today – we played a great team and lost 1-0 with about 10 min left in the game. After that we hit the cross bar and the post and nearly tied it up.
The line up was long, but it gave my radar the time to turn on. I stared at the Notre Dame Cathedral and listen to our guides’ story of The Hunchback of Notre Dame. When I stood at the doorway I realized there was a Sunday service and the great hall was packed. For those to worship you can sit in the middle – for those of you who are touring please be quite and walk the perimeter.
As I stood there I took in the sight of the magnificent building and touched the stone that has stood for hundreds of years.
The warmth filled my body. I gradually moved myself through the crowd and listen to low baritone voice sing hallelujah. The voice passed through me as if it were removing any noise that may clutter my thoughts. I slid to the right to read a plaque in French and see if all those years living in Montreal and attending a french immersion class would pay off. As I moved closer to see – I am still not sure if it was my aging eye site or the limited dungeon like light available. It was just then that I felt a moment of absolute silence. No hallelujah, no echoing whispers from the tourists and no clicking camera shutter buttons.
It was just silent enough to hear and feel the light puff of air on the side of my right ear, cheek and side of my neck. It was distinct and definitive. It was eerily calming and emotionally overwhelming. I continued to stare at the plaque – still not to sure what it was about – I wiped away the tears as I thought about my Mom who passed away a few years earlier.
After her passing I learned more about her quite, but strong religious beliefs. For reasons I am uncertain she never pushed them on us. She always wanted what was best for my sister and me. She often put everyone else’s needs ahead of hers – including her grandchildren. I wonder what she would think knowing her 12 and 14-year-old grand children are travelling through parts of Europe and are presently standing in Notre Dame Cathedral.
Our tour guide mentioned that people have real awakening moments when they pass through the cathedral he was right.
I spoke with him that evening and replayed my encounter. We spoke till 2:30 am (no alcohol required) and he explained to me the origin of the word INSPIRE. He indicated to me that it was from the Greek origin to ‘inspir’ , or blow air in to ones ear.
I guess my mother was inspiring me that day.
Learn to quite your mind and turn on your radar and its fascinating the frequencies you will hear.
Just a little note for those who are following the trip and care about the score Burlington Thunder 4 Peru 1.
Well it was a long day of travel – but we made it. A long flight through the night while everyone around you is sleeping is a wonderful time for self thought. It’s wonderful what our minds can think of when we have time to think. More often then not we tend to fill our minds with itinerary and what’s next. Actually two nights before leaving I was doing the same thing. We started to skip ahead to the big travel day. When I did this I actually took away from the trip experience. You see in the book ‘The Tao of Pooh’ Winnie spends his time in wonderful anticipation and fascination of the mere chance of finding honey. Sure, Winnie is disappointed when he eventually sniffs out an empty pot of honey, but his rather seemingly sad and troubled response is soon forgotten. He immediately places himself in the present moment and recognizes his opportunity of finding honey again. Winnie’s life is a constant in the moment opportunity of finding honey and the pleasure it brings. The great thing is the moment after he finds honey, his attention immediately returns to the chance of finding more and the day to day pleasure it brings. So we are in control of our in the moment thoughts – we just sometimes let them get away from us.
Well the last weekend before leaving and we began to pack. If we could only watch ourselves from a ‘third party kind of way’ we just might figure out why we think the way we do. I realized that I tend to over think the most insignificant items in my life – yet for much more difficult decisions, I tend to be very instinctual. You see I have this mini playoff in my head on my favorite, shirts, jeans, shorts and unmentionables. It’s kind of external force, that somehow enters my thoughts. As if to say ‘think really hard about the most trivial items and you will ensure the vacation your life.
That same day I spoke with my brother in-law about a few details of our travel. When we were signing off, I said we will see you in a few weeks. He mentioned that he and his family just couldn’t wait to see us. It hit home. The magnitude of our trip hit the core of my being. We are travelling to Europe for three weeks. I am excited for my wife and children.
After hanging up the phone, I sat in the living room silently and was truly overwhelmed. The trip is about the experience, friends and family. It’s about life long memories and removing excuses about visiting your family oversea. It’s about doing it now rather than waiting for some other time that may be better. It’s about enjoying your life and the wonderful opportunities within it.
I am a little uncertain why I was so emotional after I hung up the phone. But, one thing I am certain about – is that it probably has nothing to do with my favorite socks and underwear I’m bringing.
About ten month ago my son’s soccer team decided we
were going to enter the Donosti Cup, soccer tournament in
San Sabastian, Spain. In eight days from this post our
family and sixteen other boys and some form of
representative from there family are heading out for an
experience of a life time.
Over the next three weeks I am going to attempt to deliver
the ‘feeling’ of our family experience, rather then a day to
day itinerary of our daily do list. Remember I am trying to
capture the experience – I hope it touches your heart the
way I’m sure it will touch ours.