What I Learned on My Summer Vacation

I return from a week away, exploring different areas of Quebec, and this is what I learned on my summer vacation...

Out of necessity, and also by choice - I manage to "unplug" for most of my summer vacation...

I have no internet access for most of my time away - and really - I do not miss it...

I do not miss updating, or mindlessly checking to see what has been posted...

I do not miss the hundreds of pieces of junk email I seem to receive over the course of the day - the countless solicitations - the products I could not possibly resist or live without - and the legion of "friends" I never met and cannot possibly ignore - or the long lost relatives I never heard of, or the millions of dollars they wish to endow me with...

I am surprised at all the things I do not miss... And then, I remember life as it once was, in another time, and another era, that was so much more slower than this one...

Life slows down to a crawl...

I spend hours in a cafe - by myself, and with a friend, catching up...

I spend hours walking around - each moment stretched out infinitesimally - as if it were a rubber band on a sling shot, testing its boundaries and outer limits...

I take in every moment - every sensation - enjoying the presence of those around me - enhanced maybe, by a glass of wine here and there...

I see things, and hear things, and even sense I may have forgotten...

I lay in bed listening to every heart beat - amazed that whatever I may choose to do - it does not choose to go on holiday - ever!

And on my last night of vacation, before returning home - I cannot help but ever so slyly observe the family of four, sitting next to me - in a cafe that could have just as easily been located in Paris - as it was in Montreal...

Both parents hardly glance up from iPhones and androids - never engaging in conversation - not even smiling - or locking their eyes - while their two daughters seemed to have no problem entertaining each other. At one point the father even plugs in his ear buds! So much for family time, I cannot help but think...

What I learned on my summer vacation, is that life can pass you by - in one instant, and there is no moment that is not precious...

What I learned on my summer vacation, is that every day is a gift, for each of us has been gifted with measured days...

What I learned on my summer vacation, is that there is no substitute for being there for someone - and I finally release all those in my life who have not been there for me - without anger or resentment - I let go of them in total freedom...

What I learned on my summer vacation, is that the things you least give your attention to - are the things that often matter most - the people in your life - your health - and virtues such as simplicity, nature, gratitude and love - these are the things that touch you profoundly and which you remember...

What I learned on my summer vacation, is that less is more...

I read some - but not a lot - savoring each sentence and enjoying each image...

I can delight in a walk, and a slight breeze in oppressive heat. I can enjoy a meal, and a good discussion. I can enjoy a warm shower, and hotel amenities. I can enjoy meeting new people, and engaging in interesting conversations...

What I learned is - I can be unplugged - and my life can be just as full - if not more so - and that I can still be happy...

Comments

Nancy McGuire said…
How absolutely wonderful. I don't do enough just hanging out with friends in the real world, and I have resolved to make this a bigger part of my life. Thanks for the affirmation.
Stunning, I wish I might stay at the Chelsea besides. Have you had Leonard Cohen's melody in your mind throughout the day? I might. Your hair looks wonderful.

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