Sunday, November 11

Day 316: Delicately Balanced

I don't know how much longer I can contain my excitement for the Christmas holidays. I am trying really hard to be a good American and wait until after Thanksgiving but it is difficult. Especially when I am starting to see decorations and holiday-related items in all of the stores and we just recently delivered a whole slew of presents to our friends and family in the US. And just this minute I finished wrapping a gift for our niece who will be leaving on a big adventure this week. She will be passing through Stockholm on her way to her flight leaving from Stockholm's Arlanda airport so I asked if she thought she would have room in her bag for a small Christmas gift, since she will not be with the family for Christmas this year. Instead she will be enjoying the wonderful summer weather in Australia, with a stop over first in Thailand. Sounds like a fabulous adventure and we all look forward to Facebook updates and photos of her travels. So we will meet her and her friend tomorrow at the train station to give her big hugs goodbye and a small gift to open on Christmas day.

Thinking about our niece about to embark on this great adventure reminds me of the times in my life when I have had similar experiences. When I moved to California for a dance scholarship, when I traveled to France for a summer study abroad program and even as recent as our move almost three years ago to Sweden. I love the build up of anticipation and excitement that comes with the preparations of a big adventure, though the excitement for some of my own big adventures has also been fairly bittersweet. The excitement at the prospect of all of the new experiences I would have was delicately balanced with saying goodbyes to my family and friends. And even as difficult as the goodbyes have been, the adventures and experiences I've had have been wonderful and life changing.

My move to California over twenty years ago really helped shape who I've become as an adult and I don't regret one single moment. And though I miss my own family dearly, living in Sweden has afforded me the chance to become closer to my husband's family and that is truly a valuable thing. With all of the modern conveniences like Skype, internet telephones and airplane flights that are available to us today, living so far away from home is not nearly as difficult as it would have been years before. And I can easily say that traveling abroad to France, and subsequently Italy, Switzerland and Belgium, was as big a part of my education as graduating from college. Seeing other parts of the world and how others live, glimpsing history via historical buildings that have withstood time for centuries and just experiencing a different way of life are some of the most valuable things one can experience.

But one's adventures and experiences needn't be on a large scale. An adventure can be as simple as driving around your state or country, camping along the way and eating tuna out of the can or peanut butter sandwiches to save money. It can also be as simple as getting on your bicycle or into your car and just driving somewhere for the day where you've never been. Adventures hold a delicate balance of happiness in our lives. I can't wait to plan my own next adventure... though I have yet to determine when or where it will be. Where will your next adventure take you? Wherever it is... just remember... it is waiting for you...

West Texas Lajitas Adventure 2006

Road kill? Damsel in distress? Nope, just a crazy gal on an adventure!

No comments:

Post a Comment