Monday, February 17, 2014

Time Out

I had intended a much more intellectual post today.  Oh well. This is what came out instead.

At Christmas I gave my young grandkids a gift certificate to be traded in for a night at a hotel with their Grammie.  Saturday was the day that they cashed them in. We had enough stuff packed to stay a week, including bathing suits,  swim goggles, swim noodles, a beach ball, and an enormous bag of snacks-not all of which their mother would have approved. I had come off a week where my work was not going where I'd hoped. It was one of those weeks where I thought I might ditch it all and apply for a job at Tim Horton's coffee shop where I'd wear a baseball cap at work and serve double doubles. I won't go into it here.  Suffice it to say, I really needed a break. Three weeks ago I did a silent retreat at Loyola House, the Jesuit Centre in Guelph, Ontario.  While it was an extraordinarily nourishing experience in many ways, I realize now that I spent a lot of my time there thinking and writing-trying to use my time wisely-rather than just being.  I won't beat myself up about it. I'll do a longer retreat another time.

This past weekend with my grandkids made me remember how to fully live in the moment. Our weekend consisted of swimming in the hotel pool, me floating on a swim noodle, them sliding down the water slide endless times, or figuring out creative ways to use the noodles to dive under or to blow through.  They jumped from bed to bed in the room, and built pillow walls down the middle of their bed.  We ate popcorn and candies and ordered in Swiss Chalet.  We watched the movie Frozen, about a queen with magical ice powers whose heart needed to open in order for summer to return to the land. We all went to bed at 8:30-them trying to sleep in a strange bed, me in my bed trying to stay up a little while longer and read by the light of my headlamp.  The whispering started at 6am when we decided to get up and watch the movie Turbo.  Turbo was a snail who loved speed (of all things) and dreamed of racing in the Indie 500.  He was inspired by his hero, the Indie 500 racer, Guy Gagne (who later became the villain).  In his melodious French accent ( and before he became a bad guy), Gagne would say, "No dream is too big and no dreamer too small."  We all felt like crying when Turbo actually won the Indie 500 because he tried so hard to reach his dream, even when a crash destroyed his turbo powers. Movie over and feeling hungry, off we went to breakfast where we had waffles you make yourself and too much syrup. Then, a quick change and back into the pool for a few more hours of swimming. Everything is exciting.

That's it for my weekend. I come home even more refreshed (although exhausted if you can be both at once) than spending time in silent retreat.  Maybe that sounds blasphemous.  Maybe I left my brains in room 421. Think I'll get back into the studio again this week and not apply for the coffee shop job just yet.

"No dream is too big and no dreamer too small". Guy Gagne
Maybe bad guys can say good things sometimes.