This is my Father's world, the birds their carols raise,
The morning light, the lily white, declare their Maker's praise.
This is my Father's world: He shines in all that's fair;
In the rustling grass I hear Him pass;
He speaks to me everywhere.

- Maltbie D. Babcock

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Well, I guess I have to start somewhere...

Thirty-one years ago I, like so many at that time, loaded a backpack, got my first passport and a Eurail pass, and went off with a friend to hostel my way through Europe. That first five-week experience imprinted itself on me, and on some level I've been trying to get back ever since.

Years of busy child-rearing dulled the drumbeat in my subconscious for many years, but in the last decade the noise of it grew almost deafening at times. (Okay, so I'm being a little melodramatic.) My family will attest to the growing stacks of books about Tuscany, Parisian memorabilia, and endless movies with European backdrops being carted home. Since I couldn't imagine (short of winning a lottery) how I would ever get back there, I tried to content myself with armchair travel. Periodically I would wonder aloud to God why I would carry such a powerful longing for a place when it seemed impossible that I would ever get there. Now don't get me wrong - I am fully aware that in the grand scheme of things, I have been incredibly blessed. I have a wonderful family, a home, great friends, food on the table every day, and clean water to drink. But all that being said and acknowledged, still I yearned...

To make a long story a little less long, I have been the recipient of a modern-day miracle. I have been given an opportunity to travel to the lands I dream of, a friend to travel with, and the time and the means to do it. Tomorrow evening, after three months of planning, I step on a plane bound for Paris. Even as I form the words, it doesn't quite seem real. Six weeks in France, Italy, Switzerland, and Germany, focusing on all of the places I've been dreaming of seeing, or of seeing again.

So I begin this blog as a travel journal - to try and record my experiences on the trip both so that I may remember, and so that I may share it with any who might be interested. My son Jesse tells me that a blog is just a diary that you write but, rather than keep it locked, invite others to read if they so desire. That being said, here we go...

Dear Diary:

I am excited, nervous, incredulous, thankful, and terrified. Apart from my travelling companion, Wendy, I will not be seeing anyone else who is part of my everyday life for six weeks. Goodbye, I love you all...please take good care of my cat.

1 comment:

Jesse said...

He will be well taken care of.