It’s more than a bit odd to be in a place where there is not even a whiff of the Thanksgiving holiday, which I find hard to believe is the day after tomorrow. As we experience the subtle change of seasons here in Porto, we are thinking of those we love most and missing them. It’s bittersweet.
Coping with a lousy cold when you’re in the comfort of your home is one thing, coping while traveling is a whole different story. Sure, there’s a pharmacy on every corner in Porto, but try finding a bottle of Ginger Ale on the shelf of the neighborhood market… it ain’t gonna happen. You guessed it, the lousy cold bug has us both down for the count and I don’t have my favorite blanket with which to curl up so I’m a bit cranky. Just a bit.
“We keep moving forward, opening new doors, and doing new things, because we’re curious and curiosity keeps leading us down new paths.” Walt Disney
Apparently, we are not quite ready to settle in to the country life of retirement; the life of mowing 5 acres of grass and then watching it grow again. And, what we find ourselves embracing in this chapter of life is that we don’t have to play by the rules. It’s called redefining retirement for a reason, and that’s what we’re doing – again – we’re redefining our path of retirement.
It was on our calendar. We’d take a daycation to Washington, DC to see the Cherry Blossooms at their peak. It would make two years in a row after missing them for more years than I care to remember. But, mother nature had her own game plan. The early unseasonably warm weather fooled the trees in to an early bloom and then just when the blossoms were peaking, in rolled an arctic blast and 10″ of snow fell in some of the surrounding areas. We weren’t going anywhere!
I’ve always said that walking in the path of those who came before us is by far the best lesson travel can teach. Standing on the stairs at the Chateau de Fontainebleau where Napoleon abdicated, or walking through George Washington’s Mt. Vernon home, or walking across a civil war battlefield, are all moments in time. Moments in which we can choose to stop and consider the idea that we, as a nation, cannot move forward if we do not recognize how far we’ve come and how far we still have to go. It’s what I love most about history. And, it’s what I love most about travel.
It should come as no surprise that I am a lover of the written word; of books. No matter how many times we pack up and move, there are a dozen boxes of books that move with us. Over the years I’ve downsized as much as I can, but I have my collection of true loves and I will never part with them. So, with that thought in mind, if it’s possible to be in love with a library, then I am hopelessly in love with the Library of Congress in Washington, DC.
There are times when words absolutely fail me. And for someone who enjoys the fine art of jibber jabber and the written word, to have words fail me really sucks. If I could voice the speedway of thoughts and emotions that are zooming through my brain at this very moment you’d be begging me to STOP!
I’m pretty sure it’s not a real thing, but I’m also pretty sure I have a Women’s March on Washington hangover. I woke up with a headache, my body aches and I’m beyond tired. But at the same time I’ve never felt more empowered. #protesthangover. We left home at 7:00 a.m. yesterday morning and didn’t make it back until 10:00 p.m. To say it was a long day, well… judge for yourself.
One year ago today the men in my life were not feeling well. They would have risen to the occasion but since I had not yet come to terms with the beginning of my sixth decade, I opted to let them rest and I ignored the day. How could “I” possibly be sixty-years-