Tuesday, November 30, 2004

Try Different.

We visited with friends the other day and after dinner we sat leisurely in the warm circle of friendship at the dining room table and enjoyed a second glass of wine while talked around the world and back. Don’t you love it when that happens? Thoughts and ideas flowing freely, mixed equally with laughter and deep heart-felt feelings. The conversation went from light topics, like Christmas plans with family to heavier discussions about the pros and cons of assisted suicide. Yes, we were all over the map that night and it made for a wonderful evening. (This was the same evening I made a new fashion statement with silver duck tape! Sheesh!)

Two topics we spent a lot of time discussing around the dinner table and even after in the family room in front of the fireplace, were retirement and a post retirement move. We are already in that glorious land of retirement, but our friends aren’t. The are close to it though and are struggling with all the hard decisions of when and how to do it. We talked with them about the pros and cons of each option they had and then moved onto the biggest question on our plates right now. Should we move or shouldn’t we? If we do move when would be the best time? When we decide the best time, what area of the country do we want to live in? Do we want a smaller house with more land or less land? Do we want city or country? All these questions have been spinning around in my head for a long time, and I still don’t have any answers. We tossed many thoughts and ideas around with our friends after dinner, and had a wonderful time doing so.

Our hostess turned to me at one point in the evening when I seemed to be spinning in even faster circles about this post retirement move and said to me. Don’t try harder to figure this out, try different. I must have had a puzzled look on my face, because she went on to explain. When you get into a situation and don’t seem to be making any progress, don’t try harder, try different.

For example – picture a fly buzzing against a closed windowpane. No matter how long and hard he bangs against the glass, he isn’t going to get through it. His efforts won’t magically change that situation. Who knows, the kitchen door may be wide open and offer him a way out, but until he tries something different he is not going to notice it. So, don’t keep trying harder to bang against this windowpane in your life. Try different. Go in another direction and see what else is out there. Maybe there is a wide open door behind you, allowing exit from this situation and entrance to the fulfillment of a dream.

So, I pass this along to you today to. If you are in a situation that makes you feel like you are banging your head against a pane of glass and getting nothing but a headache. Don’t try harder – try different!

Sunday, November 28, 2004

Hemming and Hawing

I went through my closets earlier this year and cleaned out all the clothes that didn’t fit anymore. I would usually keep a few outfits just in case I put weight on again, but didn’t want to defeat myself with this behaviour, so dutifully gave them away. After all, this is not a diet I am on, but a life-style change and this time it is going to stick. I would not need those clothes again and someone else could use them, so out they must go.

Now that the Christmas season is here, we have dinner invitations and other functions to attend, plus we want to entertain here at home, so festive attire is required. Seeing as my old party togs are now having a celebration at the Sally Ann, I hit the stores to find a new pair of pants that I could dress up or down depending on the occasion. I found the perfect pair - black corduroy with a red undertone. They could be made to look dressy with a fancy top and pretty shoes, or very casual with a sweater and boots. Yep – perfect. Well except for one thing. They were a tad too long. That’s easy enough to fix, just hem them an inch and they will be fine. Right? Sounds pretty simple and straightforward doesn’t it? Wrong! Nothing is ever simple when it comes to hemming pants.

It isn’t the actual task of hemming that I mind, it is getting them the right length. I pin them up, try them on and think they are fine, so I sew the hem and try them on again and they seem a tad too short. Or I wash them once and they shrink just that little bit and end up being way too short. Of course, after washing, the hem now has a mark in it and spots from the needle and thread too. Grrrr!

The saleslady at the store suggested that I wash them first and then hem them. I thought about doing that, but it didn’t help me find the perfect length, and I also wanted to wear them right away so I settled for plan B. Big mistake!

Plan B
- My youngest daughter has been known to hem her blue jeans with duck tape, and she says it works fine and stays in place until the first washing. Hmmmmm? Maybe I should try that.

I cut four pieces of duck tape for each hem – front, back, inner and outer sides - and turned the pants up to what I thought was the perfect length. I wore them around that day and felt they were too short, so I took the tape off and lengthened them and got my outfit ready to wear to a dinner party the next evening. These pants could take me anywhere – out for an afternoon of shopping with a friend or dressed up for a dinner party. I would look and feel great whatever occasion it was. Yahoo.

The next night we got gussied up and set off for an evening of fun and I must say, I looked spectacular in my new outfit. When we got to the house I took off my boots and put my slippers on. It was then that I noticed that one piece of tape had come undone so I quietly tucked the hem up again and pressed it firmly in place. Not a major problem. Oh sure!

We sat in the family room talking and I crossed my legs and noticed the tape had come lose again. Oh dear. I bent over and pretended to scratch my foot with one hand while I fixed the tape with the other. There, all fixed! The conversation moved along and I forgot all about the sticky situation or should I say non-sticky situation. We got up from the couch to move into the kitchen and I heard a ripping sound. The hem of my pant leg had become stuck to the carpet. Did anyone else see what was happening? Nobody mentioned it as they sauntered off to the other room, so I lagged behind to try to fix the hem. Only problem was, now the tape had carpet fibres all over it, and it wouldn’t stick to anything again. Ever! So, there it was hanging down and flashing silver. I tried to quietly remove it, but the part still stuck to the outer pant was really stuck and wouldn’t budge. I folded the tape up and hoped for the best. Maybe the other three pieces of tape would be strong enough to hold the hem up and allow me to get by for the rest of the evening. Wrong! From there it just went from bad to worse. Throughout the night all the other pieces of tape came lose and I had tape stuck to my sock, slipper, carpet, kitchen floor - everywhere but to the inside of my pant leg. The part on the outside was stuck but good though and wouldn’t come off. So there I was, with four pieces of silver duct flapping merrily on the bottom of each very festive, red and black pant leg. Not a pretty sight!

I thought the best thing to do was to fess up to what I had done, laugh at myself and go from there. The hostess thought that this was the funniest thing she had every seen or heard. Being an expert seamstress she just couldn’t fathom that anyone would even attempt to tape up a hem. She seemed very pleased that she had a good story to take to the office the next day. Sigh! I walked around flashing silver duck tape for the whole evening, but didn’t let my sticky situation get in the way of our good time. I just peeled my feet carefully off the floor each time I wanted to move around and actually had an absolutely “ducky” time.

The next day it took me forever to get the tape off the outside of the hem on the pants. It wouldn’t stick to the inside of the leg for love nor money, but on the outside it seemed like it was attached with crazy glue. Take it from me, don’t ever – EVER - try to hem corduroy pants with duck tape. It might work on denim, but NOT corduroy. The tape ended up taking all the fuzzy part, off the corduroy, when I removed it! I don’t know whether the fuzzy part is the cord or the uroy, in the fabric, but whatever it is called, it seemed to melt right into the glue on the tape and wouldn’t let go. I had to cut it away with scissors. Sheesh! Luckily the “bald” patches are now firmly sewn up inside the pant leg. Double stitched in fact.

So if the next fashion trend is pants with bits of silver trim on the hem – you will know who started it.

As embarrassing as it was to have the tape hanging off my pant cuffs all night, I am happy to say that I now have a good story to go with my new pants and that is worth more than every ounce of embarrassment. I do love a good story don’t you?

Write a chapter of your own story today and don’t forget to laugh at yourself if you get in a jam. Have fun and take good care of yourself.

Thursday, November 25, 2004

First Snow Fall

What a treat to wake up and see sunshine on fresh fallen snow this morning. Absolutely beautiful after the dull rainy weather we had yesterday. It was so blustery and wet we didn’t even get out for a walk yesterday, and I went to bed late last night to the sound of wind howling around the house and icy rain hitting the windows. BRRRR!

All is quiet this morning though. There is something magical in the first snowfall isn’t there? Do you remember the wonder of it when you were a kid? I do. Waking up to the blanket of white making the whole world seem fresh and new. It not only looked new, but it smelled new and sounded different too. The old neighbourhood got a facelift and became a winter wonderland of activity for us.

We had a big hill right beside our house and we could hardly wait to get the sleighs out and play on that hill. All the other kids in the neighbourhood gathered at the hill too and we laughed and giggled and yelled and screamed as we flew down and trudged up the hill until our legs wouldn’t carry us one more step. Our feet would be cold and wet, our snow pants soggy, and our mitts soaked through but we would go for just one more slide down before going home That hill seemed like a mountain when I was a kid. The biggest hill in the world for sure. When I look at it as an adult now, it is a very little hill, but still a mountain in my memory.

When I looked out the window and saw the snow this morning I was placed on top of that mountain of memories and could smell those wet woollen mitts, taste the snow, hear the kids laughing, feel the wind on my face and see the side door of my house offering warmth and a retreat from the cold. I jumped on my imaginary sleigh and flew down the mountain just like I used to do as a kid. Wheeeee! What a fun ride.

Ahhhh the joys of the first snowfall. Grab your sleigh and come join me on top of Memory Mountain. Hop on and hold on tight – here we go. Wheeeeee!

Wednesday, November 24, 2004

Morning Commute

Busy day yesterday with lots of errands to run. Not my favourite kind of day, but I do like to get all my running around done on one day, so I pack as much as I can into it and hit the roads with my list in my pocket and my route planned out. Then, once my running around is done I am free for the rest of the week to write, bike, visit, read, - all the important things. I have one of those wonderful days stretching out in front of me now. It is cold and rainy and might even snow this afternoon. Great day to be able to stay at home.

John made hot cereal this morning and we sat at the kitchen table enjoying the apple cinnamon feast while we chatted about this and that and listened to the news on the radio. After breakfast we both toddled over to the coffee pot to fill our mugs and then it was off to work. Creamy coffee in hand we set off on our morning commute, John in his track pants and runners; I in my housecoat and slippers. He went down to his den and I ascended the stairs to my studio. As I padded up the stairs I was again thankful for the wonderful stress free morning commute we have these days. John is busy with his HTML lessons and I am in the middle of a writing project. On errand free days we work away on our computers until lunchtime and meet in the kitchen around noon for a cup of tea and something yummy to munch. Then after lunch, if it is a nice day, we hit the bike trails for a ride or go to the park for a walk. Everything about retired life is great but I especially like the morning commute.

During my working and school days I can remember walking to the bus stop in the pouring rain or blowing snow and wishing I had a car I could jump into and escape the horrible elements. Then when I got a car and had to drive through snow and ice and congested traffic, I knew that no matter what my mode of transportation, the morning commute wasn’t the best part of the day. All the rainy, cold, snowy, yukky morning treks I endured over the years make these retired commutes to work all the nicer though. If I hadn’t experienced the awful ones, I would never know how wonderful these retired life commutes are in comparison. Pure luxury indeed.

For everything there is a season and the key is to experience fully each season while we are in it. Find something positive about the one you are in right now and enjoy the trip through it.

Monday, November 22, 2004

The first shall be first! No, last! No, middle!!!!!!

I don’t know about you, but I have too many things that need to be done “first” each day.

Now that John is retired, he just likes to take the day as it comes, but I want to set goals, make a plan and see clearly where I am headed on any given day. Even the little things like, do we go for a walk or ride after breakfast, or shall we write for awhile and then go out, or go out for coffee and then do errands etc. I want to know if this is an at home day, or a running around day? John just says, “whatever” and just wants to go with the flow. You can see that we have the potential to drive each other crazy, but rather than that, we balance each other. He helps me venture outside the lines and throw the plans out the window from time to time, and I help him keep to a schedule and be ready for things before the last minute.

I believe that the day starts the evening before, not in the morning. Yes, what we do in the evening, sets the tone for the next day. What we fill our minds with, what we eat, what interactions we have with other people etc, all lay the foundation for the next day, so kind attention to the evening before is what I should do first each day.

Ok, sounds good to me. Whew! At least I know what to do first. Now, what is second?

I have read a lot of books on creativity and writing discipline during the past year, and have a list of all the things I should do first. Trouble is, you can only do one thing first and it is hard to pick one of the many. First thing for sure is meditation or prayer. Start with 20 minutes of nothing, clear your mind and get your head on straight before you rush off into the day. That sounds like a good place to start. Hmmm? What about morning pages, start with 3 longhand pages of writing to open up those creative channels. No, start with exercise, get the blood flowing and the brain awake and then start your day. No, reading should be first; no, kick start the brain with music, words, news, breakfast, coffee, email, journaling, phone calls, housework, - yikes!!!! I just have too many firsts and by the time I get through the list of what I need to do “first” it is noon and time for lunch! Help.

Today is a perfect example. It is 12:10pm and I am just now getting to the “second” thing on my list, which was really the “first” I had planned for this morning. Well maybe the fourth or fifth!! See what I mean, what do I want/need to do first? Life keeps getting in the way of my well-laid plans too. Sheesh! Oh well, tomorrow is another day and I might get first things done first then. For now, the first shall be twenty-eighth and twenty-ninth will be lunch followed by a ride along the bike trails. The air is cold but clear and calm so it is another perfect day for biking.

Actually, the first thing that I really need to do each day is enjoy the moment I am in and experience all the glorious gifts it has to offer. Sounds good to me. Hope you enjoy getting to your "first" thing "first" today and enjoy the moment you are in. Have a wonderful day.

Sunday, November 21, 2004

Making Progress

We got out on the bike path this afternoon and pedalled to the Lake. What a treat to still be riding the trails at the end of November. We tried to get out the other day too, but got rained out. At least it started to rain before we left the house, so we didn’t get caught out on the trails in the middle of a downpour. That did happen to us once, and it wasn't nice at all. Very muddy and hard to see where you are going when the rain is pelting into your eyes. Today was dry, and it was even warm enough to sit by the water once we got to the lake. Yahoo. First we went to Tim’s and got steaming cups of coffee and then took them down to the beach. Mmmmm, we sipped the creamy warmth while we listened to the sound of the waves crashing against the shoreline and watched the gulls fly overhead. There was even one lone duck playing in the waves. We watched him dive and disappear under the water for quite a while and then resurface for some air. He would bob along and play on top of the waves and then would dive again. I am sure he was having lots of fun. If ducks can have fun! Can they? Hmmm?

Anyway, as we pedalled along the path out to the lake, we met friends of ours going the other way, and we stopped to say hello. The one friend asked John about his new blue jeans, and then said to me that my blog had been very boring lately and thought it was time I wrote something other than a quote and a line or two. Sigh! I know. Other projects having been eating my writing time and quotes were an easy way to keep my blog active while life made me spin a bit. Besides the projects taking me away from writing, I went into a tail-spin about Margaret Hassan and that hurt brought back other memories of loss and grief in my life and my personal journal got the bulk of any writing time I had. I have missed blogging though, so thanks dear friend for spurring me on to get writing again.

Well, here I am at the start of new week and hope to get back into the regular swing of things. One major project is done, and another one is almost there, so I am hopeful that things will return to normal. I can always hope, but Christmas shopping and visiting are still threatening to throw a wrench into my schedule. Oh dear. If you see quotes popping up again, you will know why!!! Be patient with me as I try to be patient with myself. That is always a hard one isn't it?

I hope all is well in your little corner of the world and the extra demands of the season don’t take too much of your time and energy. It is hard to keep a balance during this season isn’t it? I am sure if we work at it, we can do it though. I am making progress, hope you are too. Talk to you all later. Take care and be good to yourself.

Treasure Indeed

Literature was meant to give pleasure, to excite interest, to banish solitude, to make the fireside more attractive than the tavern, to give joy to those who are still capable of joy, and why should we not admit it – to drug sorrow and divert thought.
Augustine Birrell

Ah yes, a good book is a treasure indeed. I hope you have a favorite one to pick up and get lost in whenever you need a mini vacation.

Saturday, November 20, 2004

Point of View

The voyage of discovery is not in seeking new landscapes but in having new eyes.
Marcel Proust

How hard it is to change the filters through which we see the world and the events that happen to us. I hope you have fresh “new” eyes today and see all sorts of new landscapes in the familiar all around you.

Friday, November 19, 2004

Joy and Sorrow

There is an alchemy in sorrow. It can be transmuted into wisdom, which, if it does not bring joy, can yet bring happiness.
Pearl S. Buck

How mysterious the link between joy and sorrow. I hope that any trace of sorrow in your life today will yet bring you happiness.

Thursday, November 18, 2004

Great Sorrow

When either your joy or your sorrow becomes great the world becomes small.
Kahlil Gibran

The world seems very small today, and I feel heart-sick and sad. I weep for Margaret Hassan's family and I send my love and prayers to them at this very painful time. Margaret is a woman I never met, but I deeply feel her loss today. She is my sister in this global family and my heart aches as I mourn her death.

Rest in peace Margaret.

Wednesday, November 17, 2004

The Hour of Lead

A friend sent this poem by Emily Dickinson to me yesterday and I thought I would share it with you today. If the labour pains of life have left you in a heap on the floor, I hope you will find some comfort in knowing that someone else has been there and knows how you feel. Be kind and gentle with yourself and rest for while.

After great pain, a formal feeling comes -
The Nerves sit ceremonious, like Tombs -
The stiff Heart questions was it He, that bore,
And yesterday, or Centuries before?

The Feet, mechanical, go round -
Of Ground or Air or Ought -
A Wooden Way
Regardless grown,
A Quartz contentment, like a stone -

This is the Hour of Lead -
Remembered, if out lived,
As Freezing persons, recollect the Snow -
First - Chill then Stupor - then the letting go -,
Emily Dickinson

Tuesday, November 16, 2004

Main Task

Man’s main task is to give birth to himself.
Erich Fromm

Birth is full of pain, but oh the joy that follows. I hope that your labour pains are few and far between today, and you are able to experience joy as you look back at the painful times in your life. Take comfort in how far you have come and how strong you have become. You have to learn when to relax and just breathe, and when to push.
Now, pant, pant, breathe, push!!!!!!

Monday, November 15, 2004

Only one you

Make visible what, without you might perhaps never have been seen.
Robert Bresson

Wow, what a challenge. Each of us has a unique contribution to make to this old world and it is up to us to find out what it is and do it. There is no other person on earth exactly like you or me at this point in history. If we don't do it, say it, be it - it might never be - done, said or exist.

Sunday, November 14, 2004

The Still Point

Except for the point, the still point, there would be no dance,
and there is only the dance.

T S Eliot

I hope you find that still point today.

Saturday, November 13, 2004

I hope you Dance

It is a beautiful sunny but cold Saturday in November and we are getting ready to dust off our dancing shoes and take a spin or two around the dance floor out in the cold crisp sunshine. Won't you join us?

My quote for today is actually a song. If you know the tune, hum along with me.

“I hope you never lose your sense of wonder
You get your fill to eat but always keep that hunger
May you never take one single breath for granted
God forbid love ever leave you empty handed
I hope you still feel small when you stand beside the ocean
Whenever one door closes I hope one more opens
Promise me that you’ll give faith a fighting chance
And when you get the choice to sit it out or dance
I hope you dance.

I hope you never fear those mountains in the distance
Never settle for the path of least resistance
lovin’ might mean taking’ chances but they’re worth takin’
Lovin’ might be a mistake but it’s worth makin’
Don’t let some hell bent heart leave you bitter
When you come close to sellin’ out reconsider
Give the heavens above more than just a passing glance
And when you have a chance to sit it out or dance
I hope you dance.”


Don’t sit this one out. Get up and dance.

Friday, November 12, 2004

Where is the dance?

"I know nothing, except what everyone knows-----
if there when God dances, I should dance."

W.H. Auden

Open up and enjoy the dance of life, wherever you are, whatever you are doing today. Does God dance in the sunrise? The sunset? A new-born baby’s cry? The movement of the tides? Geese flying overhead? Laughter? The changing of the seasons? I don’t know, but if you are there when God dances, you should dance.

Thursday, November 11, 2004


"Dancing in all its forms cannot be excluded from the curriculum of all noble education; dancing with the feet, with ideas, with words and need I add that one must also be able to dance with the pen."
Friedrich Neitzsche

Yesterday we dusted off our dancing shoes and prepared our feet to move to that distant music of our hopes and dreams. Today, let's pick up our pens and let them dance across the page with the lyrics.

Wednesday, November 10, 2004

Quotes and Notes

It is cold blustery November day here in my little corner of the world. BRRRRR! The sun is shining, but the wind is too cold and strong to go out on the bikes, so we will treat ourselves to a walk in the wetlands this afternoon and hope to get out on the bikes another day.

Things are starting to get busy around here with Christmas planning, shopping, visiting and gift making. Only 6 weeks to go and we are leaving in mid December, so I don't even have 6 weeks. I must get everything done before we leave. Yikes! How am I going to find time to blog? Hmmmm? That is the most important question right now.

I think I have come up with an idea that will keep my blog active but won't require a lot of time to read or write during this busy season.

For years now I have been collecting quotes and have a huge collection of my favorites. I thought I might share one or two a day here in my blog just as a way of posting something each day and saying hello without tackling a major writing task. I am sure there will be longer posts in here from time to time, but for the most part just a little hello and thought for the day. So, here goes.....

"Hope is hearing the melody of the future. Faith is to dance to it now."
Richard Alves

If your hear that distance music and your toes are starting to tap to it, go find your dancing shoes, dust them off and set your feet to moving. One, two, three; one, two, three; one, two, three!!! There you go. Enjoy.

Thursday, November 04, 2004

Pink Ribbon Whispers

We have been home for a week now and have enjoyed two long bike rides over to the lake (no hills - yahoo) and have taken many walks around city streets, through the trails at the wetlands, and along the paths in the woods at our local park.

These city walks are much tamer than our Riverwood rambles were for sure, and take some getting used to. At the farm it is was so wonderful to be able to step outside the kitchen door and have 117 acres of forest right at our feet – so to speak. We didn’t have to drive anywhere to go for a nice walk. Here in the city, that is exactly what we have to do if we want to tread upon anything other than a concrete slab. Concrete paths do make for worry-free walking though, and there is something to be said for that, and street signs too. They help us find our way out and back again, and it is the safely back again part that I value most. I don’t have an innate sense of direction so I get quite panicky when I don’t have a clear path or signpost to show me the way home. In this confusing, old world, we just need to know how to find our way home again don’t we? Home to, peace, contentment, security, love, acceptance - all the things that make us feel welcome and safe.

The first walk I took after we got back to the city was a brisk jaunt around our neighbourhood. It seemed so strange to stroll all the well-lit streets, lined with cookie cutter houses which had a car or two in every driveway, high fences around postage stamp backyards and well groomed flower beds, still in full bloom, at each front door. After the rugged, freshly cut trails at Riverwood I felt really out of place on these city streets. The new trails at the farm went through such thick dense areas of the forest that we had to follow coloured markers tied to trees to find our way along some parts of the path. A bit unnerving at times, but mostly just plain fun. No such coloured ribbons were needed here in this familiar urban sub-division.

As I clipped along the plain city sidewalks that night I remembered one of the last adventures we went on at Riverwood. After lunch one day, we put fresh batteries in the GPS, and set off to explore the west boundary line of the farm. We had never walked this path before and no else had walked it to mark it for us either. We were told that it had once been fenced, and if we looked carefully we would see the fence posts and be able to follow them along the property line. Oh sure! Broken fence posts rotting and hidden in heavy bush did not stand out — at all! Some were upright but most were lying on the ground with scraps of barbed wire sticking out here and there, to show us where the property line had once been many years ago. Many, many years ago.

At the start of our trek, we stood on the road in front of the dense bush at the south end of the property and knew that if we walked directly north we would come out to a clearly marked road on the other side of the property.

We got our bearings, found the first fence post and bravely ventured deeper into the bush to locate the next post. I tried to spot unique trees or other markers along the way to help me keep north directly in front of me. It was overcast, so I got no help whatsoever from the sun. We were only about 5 minutes into the bush when John asked me to point north. I confidently did so and was shocked to learn that I was pointing west!!!! He said he thought we were going north too, but when he checked the GPS was surprised to see how far off he was and wanted to see if I was just as turned around. I was, and after only 5 minutes too. Sheesh! After that, John kept the GPS in his hand, not his pocket, and we followed it closely.

We corrected our direction even though it felt like we were going the wrong way and, sure enough, came across another old fence post almost totally hidden in the thick undergrowth on the ground. Goodness! Who would have thought that we would have had so much trouble finding our way without the GPS. Nature is grand and glorious but also frightening and overwhelming and should never be taken for granted. Don’t set out on any journey —in the woods or in life — without a map or compass.

About an hour after we plunged into the bush, we made it safely out onto the road on the other side of the property and had actually managed to find crumbling fence posts all along the way, but it would have been almost impossible without the GPS. Marvellous little invention that!

The newly cut but dense walking paths within the property lines at Riverwood were a bit easier to follow but not much in some places. They were marked with coloured ribbon tied to trees along the way. I didn’t need the GPS on those trails, but I did need to keep looking for those bright pink ribbon markers. As we walked along, I would search for the trail marker and then, once I saw it, relax and walk directly towards it. And when I say directly, I mean directly. Over logs, through brambles, whatever. Just keep the ribbon in sight and walk through or over whatever is in your path. What a relief to know that someone had walked this trail before me and knew the way out. That helped me to relax and enjoy the walk more. I would feel the tension start to build again though, as I approached one marker but couldn’t see the next one. I had to walk right up to the one I could see and then stand still and look around in all directions to find the next one. Some were bigger than others, some we at eye level, some lower, some higher. Not always easy to find, but there, if I really searched for them.

Markers on the trees at Riverwood, GPS readings on new trails, and street signs here in the city all help me find my way along confusing pathways.

Sometimes I wish I had some bright pink-coloured markers to show me the way along this path through life too. Don’t you? It would really help if we could have some marker that would say: "Yes, turn here. No, don’t go there. Move now. Stop here. Go through the brambles. Yes, through the brambles not around them. Break a few branches if you must, but walk toward the coloured marker and don’t lose sight of it until you line up the next one and then walk towards it undaunted. Take this path to that new job. Say this to your grown daughter. Don’t say that. Vote this way. This is the house or apartment for you." And so on.

We don’t have pink ribbons tied to the trees or magic GPS readings to guide us, but we do have that still small inner voice that will not direct us wrong. We must stand still and be quiet long enough to hear it though. It cannot be heard over the busyness of the doing.

If you feel lost or confused right now and need some direction. Stop what you are doing. Stand still and be quiet for a while. Look around you and listen to that still small inner voice. It might only be a whisper, but, if you are still enough, you will hear it clear as a bell, and it will guide you to your heart’s home. Shhhhh. Be still! Be still! Do you hear that pink ribbon whisper?