Like many of you, I travel for business. An agenda agreed to, dates confirmed, airline tickets bought, ground transportation arranged, hotels booked, and maybe a restaurant selected. The day arrives and presto I am transported to the appointed place, do my work and come home. I have found myself describing my schedule as a recitation of destinations: New York, Vancouver, Las Vegas, Orlando or wherever. It’s easy to find myself living from one trip or one event to another – either going or coming.
This year for New Year’s our friends Jim and Nicky invited us to their beach place in Florida. An easy flight on Southwest Airlines, but my husband enjoys car trips and since we could stop in Atlanta to see our daughter, I agreed. I had imagined doing my share of the driving, which I did or working on my computer, which I didn’t.
What I did was notice. I noticed the landscape changing from the silver gray hills of Middle Tennessee to the tail end of the Appalachian Mountains, the flat pinelands of Georgia to the live oaks and palms of Northern Florida.
The weather gradually shifted from raw and wet to sunny and humid. Three lanes of southbound traffic surged through overcast countryside. The license plates from Ontario, Michigan, Wisconsin and Illinois seemed to tell the story: people, like geese, flying south for the winter.
Thanks to the traffic around Atlanta we arrived at our destination later than we’d anticipated, but it was a holiday week, I had quiet time with the man I love and whether it took 2 hours, or 12 hours didn’t really matter, at least not this time.
Now I am sitting enjoying the sound and sight of the surf from a friends’ porch, smiling and shaking my head at a photo I just received of my grandson’s first stitches (not serious), realizing they probably won’t be his last. I don’t know or care whether it will rain tomorrow because I have a good friend and a good book. This tranquility came from simply noticing.
This is not an invitation to give up flying for the mixed pleasure of the open road and gas station bathrooms of uncertain hygiene. It is, however, an invitation to notice the “connective tissue” of life. The time and space between events. Our lives are richer when we pay attention to “time in between”, where thoughts, feelings and imagination get refreshed.
What have you noticed in this time between Christmas and New Years? Let me know.
Until next Tuesday.
Don’t forget to put Discover Your YIPPEE Retreat on YOUR calendar – April 10-11, 2015 in Nashville. Register early to SAVE!