Monday, May 28, 2012

Grape #17: Pilgrimage to Maui: Part 7

Monday, May 28, 10:40 AM Maui, 4:40 PM New York

Today is our last full day on Maui; we leave tomorrow around noon—I think.  Need to look up our flight info and check in with the airline to make sure.  I’ll be doing some writing on the planes, but just a brief couple of notes here first.  The rainbows become standard.  You are always happy to see them, but you get so used to them, they just become part of the view.  The crystal clear blue waters, the palm trees, the Hawaiian music on the radio, it’s all just expected at this point two weeks in.  And that’s a good thing and a bad thing at the same time.

It’s good to expect beauty, a lovely-weather day, a smile, a rainbow, relaxation.  It’s bad to take it for granted, as I imagine so many native Hawaiians must do.  You cannot expect perfection, but you cannot expect problems either.  Both expectations pull us from our natural state which is meant to be ever changing.  As an old monk once told me, “If you don’t take the bitter with the sweet, you can’t tell the difference.”

I’ll miss the rare birds and flowers I’ve seen here, the mongooses and the geckos, the volcanoes, and the perfect weather.  But on Long Island in New York where I live, there are squirrels, raccoons, birds not seen in Hawaii, trees that don’t grow here on Maui.  Most of all there is my home, my car, my job, my family, and my friends.  None of these are here in Hawaii.  Difference and change keep us alive, they remind us to appreciate, to welcome our surroundings wherever in this universe we find ourselves. 

Tomorrow we leave this land, for now.  I plan and hope to come back again soon.  Our photos, videos, and memories will come back to Long Island with us, because no Hawaiian ecology team can prevent us from bringing them through customs/security!  This place has been a paradise in so many ways, and I really hope my friends and family will be able to come and visit.  It awakens a dormant part of you, and makes you even more alive than you already are.  My soul I take with me wherever I go, but I’ve just found another part of the divine plan and another element of my own soul here, 5,000 miles from home. 

Saint Augustine was a great writer, philosopher, and soul.  And he has been a very special part of my ever-growing faith journey.  So I’m going to end my blog today with two very special quotes from Augustine I have kept close to mind for many years now, and I hope you will reflect on them and enjoy them too.  I think they speak well to some of the reflections I have made in this trip blog.

“The world is a book, and those who do not travel read only a page.”
-St. Augustine

“Men go forth to marvel at the mountain heights, at huge waves in the sea, at the broad expanse of flowing rivers, at the wide reaches of the ocean, and at the circuits of the stars, but themselves they pass by.”
-St. Augustine

No comments:

Post a Comment