Marvelous Moments

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Reading through my journal, 2014 has already brought so many wonderful new experiences.  Our time living abroad feels like life is on fast-forward,  so we really try to be present and feel thankful for these kinds of moments:

  • sampling new  Swazi and South African dishes: impala, pap, warthog, and ox tail
  • the moving, resonant, and harmonic voices of just six people attending an evening church service; their sound burst through the silence with gorgeous, powerful, a cappella song that filled the room
  • A hippo and crocodile cruise in St. Lucia’s iSimangaliso Wetland Park (a UNESCO World Heritage Site), and sleeping under mosquito netting in a cabin that feels like you’re in the jungle
  • the concept of the lodge “honesty bar, ” where you drink what you like in an outside lounge area, write it down, and get charged when you check out
  • playing with our toddler in tidal pools formed by the  Indian Ocean, watching the joy of his daily discoveries, wonderment of life, and reminders to all of us to be child-like and PLAY
  • fragrant Victoria St. Market in Durban; a maze of beaded sandals, wooden carvings clothing, jewelry, painted ostrich eggs, and woven baskets
  • being treated like family at a coffee roaster in a litchi orchard in Salt Rock, South Africa, where they are “mad for a gorgeous cuppa”
  • the adrenaline rush and phenomenal views from a first micro flight over Ballito
  • Driving on highway R541 called “The Genesis Route,” tied to the origins of our planet and the idea that all humans share an African heritage. 3.5 billion-year-old rocks in Makhonjwa mountain range are amongst the most ancient in the world. (let that sink in for a second. Wow, right)?
  • Discovering Vetiver grass roots, which smell divine, and loving the beautiful nests into which the roots are woven
  • Visiting Jane Goodall’s Chimp Eden, a bit disappointed not to have time for a tour, but then heading back to the car and spotting a group of  giraffes (called a “tower,” which seems aptly named, as they do tower, and grandly so).  Just free roaming, wild and out in the open.  Stunning.

Blossoming Spring

The force that through the green fuse drives the flower... 
first line of a poem by British Poet, Dylan Thomas

April showers turned naked, leafless branches into gorgeous blossoms and  flowering, fluorescent green trees that show off their glory. Even on the grey days, green shoots push through the soil (and bravely force their way through concrete) to announce the end of winter.  Fat, heavy rain drops sit on petals and cobwebs, hydrating the earth. I am grateful for the abundance of beauty in nature.

This month of May, as petals open and the weather warms, may you shed any remnants of winter, feel lighter and brighter, and experience Spring with the wonderment of a child.

Our son, Ramsay, will become a one-year-old in a couple of weeks, and this is his first Spring. Taking walks with him brings me endless joy, as he observes and studies every detail of life around him. His reaction to a thistle reminds us to find fun in the little things. Enjoy this quick video:

[wpvideo OtKpViAC]