Savoring the journey

There’s a moment when you’re traveling and you look inside your cooler full of goodies, only to find that it’s filled with Joint Juice and liquid vitamins. That’s when you think to yourself, “Wow, we really are getting older.” Age is only a number though, and we’re trying to live each day to capacity.

I remember being a kid and not being able to stand the endless car ride to the beach or the park, or wherever the destination might be. On our way to Destin the other day, I was reminded of trips to Mobile and the USS Alabama, and how I thought we would never get there(it’s only about an hour and a half drive). If running has taught me nothing else, it has taught me that life is not really about the destination, it’s all about the journey. So, I’ve learned to savor the journey, to enjoy every single moment as I try to live my days to capacity. I know my destination, but I’m not afraid to take a few detours to get there.

Today’s travels started before dawn and led us through Memphis, a short dart into Arkansas, then the rest of the day was spent traveling the highways of Missouri. We crossed the “Mighty Mo” river several times (not sure how that happens), and have been treated to idyllic countryside dotted with cows, barns, and cornfields. Whoever was in charge of barn design in Missouri got it exactly right. Old, weathered sides, some painted red, some with just a hint of red still showing, huge haylofts with doors that swing wide, silos waiting to be filled with corn. He (or she) should be the only one allowed to design barns anywhere. They look just like what a barn should look like, and the cows seem to be a little more content because of it. I bet the milk tastes better here, too. Unfortunately, no barn images yet.

I love the countryside of America. We usually travel back roads to get a better flavor of the community, but, this journey already being a 22 hour one, we’re traveling highways to make the best use of our time. Fortunately, these highways have afforded beautiful glimpses into the countryside and even offered a couple of breathtaking vistas from the summit of a bridge. And, we took a detour that led us down some winding country roads.

When we first started planning this trip, just a few short weeks ago, I became more focused on getting everything ready to be away for a couple of weeks. As usual, I let Gary do the heavy lifting, the planning, the reservations, the mapping. He’s really good at it & seems to enjoy it, so who am I to deny him? Anyway, I didn’t realize until today how close we would be traveling to my Missouri relatives – my sister & brother-in-law, her youngest son & his wife, and most importantly, my 21 month old great nephew and as yet unmet 5 week old great niece. After some quick recalculations and a few short texts, we altered our journey slightly to include a quick visit to introduce Kristianna Chichester to her Aunt Jayne. Of course, an impromptu photo session was called, and we made quick work of it.

Savoring the journey indeed.

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