Along the road

Slow down and enjoy the scenery! Bar Harbor, Maine, June 2012

Slow down and enjoy the scenery! Bar Harbor, Maine, June 2012

“I regret less the road not taken than my all-fired hurry along the road I took.”
Robert Brault

As hard as it might be for some of us to believe this, if we live long enough we will look back on this particular time in our lives and miss at least a few of the people or things that are part of it.  Though we may recall this phase of life as difficult, sad or even horrible, there will be something good about it to remember.  And if these are relatively good times, we might not realize quite how good they are until we can see them from a few years’ distance.

So often we speak of “getting through” something as if we are eager for it to pass quickly.  We “get through” school, job training, our children’s diaper years, or the financial strain of their college years.  Almost always, these times pass far more rapidly that we expected, and we are left rather breathless in amazement, wondering where the time went.

Whatever is in store for you today, I hope you won’t try to get through it too quickly.  If it’s a good day, I wish you the ability to savor every minute.  If it’s a hard day, I hope you will be able to see a few gems sparking in the muck.  Take them out, rinse them and save them.  They are precious now, and will be even more precious later.

One year ago today:

No time



  1. bobmielke

    I have a pretty good memory. I look back on my 65 year life and am amazed how it seems to read. At different times I seemed to play the roles of different biblical character. The Job phase was the toughest. There are times where I thought I wouldn’t survive until I remembered that God will never give you more than you can handle. We have to learn to rely on Him to provide exactly what we need.

    I got an opportunity to share my Christian walk with my new landlord yesterday as we moved my stuff into his home. Everything happens for a purpose and since I’m keenly aware of this I’m excited to experience this next chapter in my life.

    • Bob, I am so happy you can look back at your life and see the things that may not have been obvious at the time. I do think we tend to find ourselves in different roles at different stages of our lives, and it is helpful to see parallels in the stories we read. Sometimes I feel like the unknown mother packing the loaves and fishes for Jesus to feed 5000 people with, because my own efforts seems so small and feeble but I know they can be multiplied beyond my capabilities. But since Matt was born, the character I most identify with is the father with the gravely ill child, saying “Lord, I believe; help my unbelief!” These stories can help us see our lives with a bit more perspective. I hope your new landlord proves to be a better one than the previous one!

  2. raynard

    Julia, August is ” my get through” month. My oldest daughter’s birthday is tomorrow. Next week is the middle daughter and the following week is my youngest one’s birthday.” Excuse my french as they say, I’m running on slightly 5 hours of sleep getting ready to go back to work.Traffic when we were driving to Virginia Beach was heavy , it was moving . The by pass for 264 was nice we seen ” more water than I could drink. Niagra Falls( 7 hours away might be our next” Smokey& The Bandit/Cannonball Run… “The recipe I might use for our church’s bakeoff a trifle. Lemon/berry or Gingerbread but instead of gingerbread, ginger snap cookies ” spice it up ( the kool whip part) orange and mint.. so you will taste several layers of flavor goiing down to the bottom.. more to come, be blessed

    • Raynard, if Niagara Falls was only 7 hours from us, I might be trying to go there once a month. Jeff and I both loved it. But that’s a slight exaggeration because it’s only 10 hours to see Grady and we still don’t get there as often as I wish we could. Luckily there are videos and photos. Hmmm, lemon/berry or Gingerbread is a very hard choice. I would give a slight edge to the lemon/berry in hot weather and to the Gingerbread in cold weather, I have this thing about Gingerbread anything at Christmas! Either way you can’t lose. Jeff got me some chocolate from Lindt that had actual orange pieces in it and it was some of the best chocolate I ever had, even though I never thought of chocolate and orange going together. So I think the idea of “layers of flavor” is a good one!

  3. Sheila

    Julia, years ago (I’m saying that often) when “Just Married” and decorated cars were popular, one logo that I remember was “Sharp turns, soft shoulders, watch out for kids”. 🙂
    The photo is beautiful, but even the life road we travel can have the same blind curves and poor visibility. Today I will try to view any unplanned interruption as more of an opportunity. I think I’ll call granddaughters, Autumn and Emma, and see if they’d like to come to the beach! I hope your appointments go well. Thinking of y’all …..

    • Hi Sheila, lately it seems that the only phrase I use more often than “years ago” is “many years ago.” ;D Matt got a great report from Dr. Berul today, Hooray!!! We are feeling very happy about that. Hope you had a fun day with your granddaughters or whoever you ended up spending the day with!

  4. Guilty!! Me, the fast walker, breezing thru European streets wanting not to miss a thing. I would implore Mr B to pick up the pace, “we don’t have much time”. He’d remind me that he wanted to, “enjoy the time we had”. Now if we could only meet on that somewhere in the middle, we’d be going at the perfect pace, LOL

    Bar Harbour, Maine looks a lot like British Columbia Canada 😀 I like their accents in Bar Harbour.

    • Well, that settles it! You and Jeff can go on holiday together next time, and Mr. B and I will tag along smelling the flowers, reading the signs, taking photos and generally throwing sand in the gears of the schedule. 😀 I do tend to walk pretty quickly, though, and people sometimes complain about it, as well as my tendency to forget lunch (and sometimes dinner) in my enthusiasm for seeing everything. Drew has coached me “Now Mama, remember most people have to eat,” when we have visitors coming for whom I’ll play tour guide.

      • Oh, I’m ok with grazing along the way. In fact, I prefer it. A nibble here, an ice-cream cone there. I’d rather be moving than sitting at a restaurant for 2 hours, LOL. But we’ll have to stop sometimes, and it might as well be to share a meal and some good conversation.
        I don’t know if you’ve ever watched ‘The Amazing Race’. Teams of two (often friends, couples or parents and their son or daughter) race around the globe, doing challenges, following maps, navigating through traffic in strange cities and running, paddling, climbing to a destination where the last one to check in gets eliminated. I’ve told Mr B that we’ll never be a team because he’s way to slow. I’d have to go with Jeff I guess, LOL. The winners get a million dollars. Will Jeff eat weird stuff? That would be my only fear, to get a challenge where you have to eat BBQ scorpions or something.

        • Yes, it drives me NUTS to be sitting around a restaurant in some exciting place I’d like to be out exploring. I’m not too fond of sitting around restaurants at all, unless the charming cafe types that serve tea and scones. 😀 Jeff is a much more adventurous eater than I am, although he’s gotten less so over the years. Used to be he would try almost anything once. For a million dollars he probably would! Mr. B can do the strategic planning. Some people don’t need to move quickly to win. 🙂

  5. Great point, Julia.
    In moving forward as individuals or as a nation, we look around us and find that little progress has been made, in the pursuit of progress. The reason being: the material needed to lay a strong foundation on which to build meaningful progress, is in those good things of our past. And too often, in moving forward, we leave behind the best of who we are.

    • Alan, I think that may mean that sometimes, moving forward may paradoxically involve going back in at least some respects. A good example is in medical care. I am interested (and encouraged) to see that many time-honored means of more natural healing that were scoffed at 30 years ago are now being recognized as beneficial. Same goes for nutrition, building materials, etc. New isn’t always better and if we stick around long enough, we see quite a few things of the past being re-visited with a bit more respect.

  6. After a little bit of rinsing they are all too good. Liked that idea. But while they are actually happening all we see is the muck.

    • Yes, muck has a way of covering over a lot of good things. Once when my Daddy was a boy scout leader for my brother’s troop, they had a gold rush. They spray painted lots of little gravel rocks (and a few big nuggets) with gold, and buried them in the mud, and let the scouts pan for gold. I can still remember seeing the little gold rocks shining in all that mud as it was rinsed off. That’s what we have to do with our thoughts when we remember the hard times. Hope you are enjoying your break!

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