Friday, April 11, 2008

Beach Walking

The weather cleared today - almost too much for me as we hit the 80 degree mark - I like it at about 60:)

So in the morning, as Sierra likes to wake up quite early and I am more of a morning person than Pastor Jennifer, I normally take Sierra out for a walk on the beach. In the past this has been a wonderful time for the two of us to just stroll and see everything.

Yesterday, Sierra and I went out for our normal walk, went about five paces, and then she started to tell me she needed to be carried and was tired of walking. So we turned around, got a doughnut, and watched the sunrise from the porch. Initially, I was disappointed. I like these morning walks with her. I like watching the sunrise and the waves break. This was one of those moments that I truly treasured.

This morning, she wouldn't even go near the beach in the early am. No walks, no shell hunting, nothing. Later in the day we went and she played in the sand, but I was starting to think that the morning walk ritual was coming to an end.

Then tonight, a new twist. After dinner she was climbing the walls, so I asked her if she wanted to go fo a walk on the beach, expecting her to say no. She jumped at the chance, so off we went. This time we saw the sunset, rather than the sunrise - just as beautiful, just as precious.

Who knows what tomorrow morning will bring.

Taking advantage of the many opportunities in life is a true blessing, and we miss those rituals and little walks we when rush through them rather than enjoying them. I also see the windows that are opened when other doors close in life.

So I will keep asking Sierra to go on walks. I will keep taking trips to the putt-putt course with Jennifer (don't ask about the last game:), I will keep spending time with the people I love and treasuring every minute of it. We only have so much time on earth, let us enjoy it and enjoy the people we spend it with.

1 comment:

Betty Dygart said...

I awoke this morning to more rain and had to put the lights on to see my way around the house. As I write this, the rain has turned to half snow. April is such a weird month, on the edge of spring, and from day to day it hardly knows what it wants to do.

This seeming indecision in April characterizes many of us in our daily lives. Some days we are all gung-ho to do something or other, and the next day we wonder why we ever thought it was worthy of our attention. Sometimes it's hard to stay with a thing, especially if it's challenging.

"Do we HAVE TO do this?" said a student of mine one day, after I had taken about 15 minutes to explain an upcoming assignment. I turned to her, and in an exasperated voice told her, "The only thing you HAVE TO do is die."

Lucky for me, the bell rang. The student was quite upset with me and was telling everyone around her that I had told her to die. Sometimes, you just can't get through to people, no matter how hard you try.

It seems to me that the important thing in life is to never lose your curiosity. When I was teaching, this was the ingredient that I saw lacking in so many of my students. They had no sense of adventure, didn't want to take on an assignment, were too lazy, or maybe just so burned out, that it was like if you asked them to do just one more thing, they would implode or something.

This is frustrating stuff for a teacher, especially a teacher who has never lost interest in learning and growing. I hope I never lose this. If I do, I will already be dead.

My "cat psalms" clearly describe why cats are the pets of choice for me, because they share my never ceasing curiosity...

"I am filled with curiosity.
Anything they are doing I want to know about.
I watch to see what they are making and how it will turn out and if I can help.
I want to know what they are reading and how it feels beneath my paws.
I wonder whom their phone call is from and if I can add my sounds to theirs.
My curiosity is stongest when I see them opening a box.
I move in close.
If I am close, they will notice me and show me.
If they leave the room, I will investigate on my own.
I want to be next to the box, on top of the box, inside the box.
There is so much to see, to discover.
I want to know what's next, who is here, what is there.
They help me be curious.
Curiosity keeps me alive, makes me a cat."

O God, I am curious. I seek and knock, I wait and watch. I want to know what you are doing with my world, with my life--how it will turn out, if I can help. I examine what is far, what is near, what is done, what will come. I have so many questions; there is so much I do not understand. I must know. Finding out puts my soul in the middle of how I see you, hear you, believe you. My soul begs to comprehend. My soul searches in the dark, listens in silence, is curious in the morning watch. O God, you made so much to watch, to discover, to care for, to hope for. Curiosity will not kill me; it will keep me alive. Thank you for giving me curiosity.