LEAPFROGGING

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Without even realizing it, most of us are consummate leapfroggers, so skilled we’ve become at moving from moment to moment that the humdrum just fades away, as does the pain of absence. It can happen at any time, of course. But for all of us who are brave enough to send people we love away: to camp, to school, to far away places, it’s how we cope. We transform ourselves into Time Lords in a sense, leaping from moment of happiness to moment of happiness when we’re together again. And here we are. Together again. And happy.

It makes good sense that school graduations should happen in the spring, a time when everyone feels the thrill of newness and possibility. Because, of course, graduation is not an end at all, but a joyous and celebratory marker in time. We have leapfrogged here and we try so hard to linger, to balance, to stay for as long as possible before we reluctantly tack this moment into the scrapbook of memory.

It’s a thrill to look out over the sea of mortarboards, to consider the mysterious cowls, velvet tams, colored tassels and cords, to wonder solemnly at the decorous, yet brilliantly colored, doctoral gowns.

These ceremonies, rife with pomp and circumstance, studded with brass quintets,  soaring soloists, and nervous keynotes, shake with the right, diploma with the left again and again and again. The applause goes on for hours but even so it doesn’t seem to be enough. It’s not.

Here’s a secret: greedy little thing that I am I always stay through every credit at the movies. This is partly to show my respect to all the behind the scenes people who work so hard to make it all happen. But I also stay because there is always the chance that the actual ending of the picture might not happen until after the credits roll.  Special treat when I’m right but even when there’s no little winking twist at the end of the end of the movie in my mind it’s not really over. There are still so many possibilities to every story.  So is with graduates and graduations: the story continues, rife with possibility and promise. Congratulations then to all of them and to all who support and love them. Leap on everyone to your next moments of happiness!

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LEAPFROGGING

FullSizeRender (1)

Without even realizing it, most of us are consummate leapfroggers, so skilled we’ve become at moving from moment to moment that the humdrum just fades away, as does the pain of absence. It can happen at any time, of course. But for all of us who are brave enough to send people we love away: to camp, to school, to far away places, it’s how we cope. We transform ourselves into Time Lords in a sense, leaping from moment of happiness to moment of happiness when we’re together again. And here we are. Together again. And happy.

It makes good sense that school graduations should happen in the spring, a time when everyone feels the thrill of newness and possibility. Because, of course, graduation is not an end at all, but a joyous and celebratory marker in time. We have leapfrogged here and we try so hard to linger, to balance, to stay for as long as possible before we reluctantly tack this moment into the scrapbook of memory.

It’s a thrill to look out over the sea of mortarboards, to consider the mysterious cowls, velvet tams, colored tassels and cords, to wonder solemnly at the decorous, yet brilliantly colored, doctoral gowns.

These ceremonies, rife with pomp and circumstance, studded with brass quintets,  soaring soloists, and nervous keynotes, shake with the right, diploma with the left again and again and again. The applause goes on for hours but even so it doesn’t seem to be enough. It’s not.

Here’s a secret: greedy little thing that I am I always stay through every credit at the movies. This is partly to show my respect to all the behind the scenes people who work so hard to make it all happen. But I also stay because there is always the chance that the actual ending of the picture might not happen until after the credits roll.  Special treat when I’m right but even when there’s no little winking twist at the end of the end of the movie in my mind it’s not really over. There are still so many possibilities to every story.  So is with graduates and graduations: the story continues, rife with possibility and promise. Congratulations then to all of them and to all who support and love them. Leap on everyone to your next moments of happiness!

A Tiny Mystery

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By nature I’m a rusher though I wish this wasn’t so.   But lately I’ve found myself slowing down just a bit, maybe just enough. And that’s when I saw it. A tiny little door placed right in façade of a building. If I’d been rushing I would have missed it completely. But I didn’t.

Why was it there? Who crafted it so perfectly? Were there more, are there more? Who else knows the secret?  What deeper meaning was there that somehow I couldn’t fathom at all? “Oh,” said one of my sons matter-of- factly, “that’s a Fairy Door.”

It was in the middle of a hard jumble of a week. Tight schedules and packing bags, unexpected sickness and brave struggles towards renewed vigor, bittersweet endings and thrilling glimmers of new beginnings, hundreds and hundreds of miles logged on Route 80 dodging truck traffic. Burger King, Burger Fi, Blimpy Burger.

I caught up to everyone else and we continued on. Endless mugs of coffee and platters of Hippie Hash. (If you’ve never tried this you should. Look it up.)

On the way back I found the tiny door again.   I loved how perfectly it was made. I loved that it was there. I was about to do what I always do—do the research, search for answers, learn the history: the whys the wherefores the hows. I always want to put everything together safely in a box, seal it up and feel that I am done.  But I couldn’t do it. Not this time. Instead I found myself reaching into my pocket.

There is always something there. Acorn tops, lucky coins, fortune cookie fortunes, little drawings, bottle caps and the occasional pink ring of power. It’s more likely that I’d leave my wallet at home than any of these admittedly odd talismans. Each holds a special meaning and memory. I fingered a small plastic beehive and a lucky dime I’d found on the sidewalk and placed them at the foot of the tiny door. One last look and I walked away.

There’s a key scene in the movie Harold and Maude. Sitting before a lake late in the evening Harold gives his beloved Maude something very unexpected and very precious. Giving her this small token was intensely hard for him to do. Maude is deeply moved and says she loves it…then she flings the gift into the center of the lake. Harold is appalled until Maude turns to him sweetly and says, “and now I’ll always know exactly where it is.”

Maybe sometimes we need a little mystery instead of answers.  Maybe sometimes it’s just enough to wonder, to dream, to hope. But it’s good  to know that hiding around any corner there might be something precious, or something thought lost is really quite safe in the middle of the lake.