On Being Thankful – 2015

At a time when the world at large seems to be caught up in a manic spin cycle, I’m taking a moment to remember the good in the world; goodness we’ve been gifted with in our lives. I think it’s something we all tend to forget to do, I know I’m guilty of it.  Especially, in the past few weeks with the fueling of ignorance spreading like wildfire by presidential hopefuls and the mass media.  Why not lead the news with acts of good and kindness such as the little boy who wants to personally thank all of the NYPD?

There’s so much good in the world, but it isn’t served to us in the same proportion as the hate, ignorance and violence.  We have to go out and find the good. There are days when I simply walk away from the television, I don’t want to hear it or see it and the thought of campaign propaganda infiltrating our lives for the next year kinda makes me want to scratch my fingernails down a chalk board – yeah, it’s like that.  So, I’m making a list and checking it twice – oh wait, that’s a different holiday – and I’m taking this moment to be thankful for the good that crossed our path in 2015.

I’m Thankful For

I’m thankful for the kindness of those who live along the path of the Camino de Santiago; the generosity of their good wishes filled our hearts as we walked.

The hotelier who kidnapped us and drove us 12 miles on a cold rainy day on the Camino when I wasn’t sure I could walk the distance. I’m thankful he didn’t understand a word we said, but knew what we needed.

A quiet man who grew the world in his field, demonstrating to all those who passed by, the world is indeed a beautiful site to see.  His field touched our hearts and for that, I am thankful.

Thankful

The world is a beautiful site to see.

Blisters.  I couldn’t say this at the time, but surprisingly, I am actually thankful for every single blister I endured while walking the Camino because without those blisters, I would not have learned as much as I did.

Cathedrals.  Whatever you believe – or don’t – cathedrals are home to history, peace, beauty and sometimes they are in the center of controversy.  I am thankful we embraced the goodness of cathedrals.

Thankful

The Cathedral of Leon, Spain.

Who says the French don’t like Americans?  Ha!  It’s not true, it just isn’t.  Spend some time in Paris – or anywhere in France – and you’ll understand.  I am beyond thankful Abi suggested we spend 3 weeks, in the dead of winter, in Paris.

I am thankful for the incredible hospitality of the Iranian people; a nation misunderstood by the western world.

Thankful

The colorful shawls are a cultural tradition in the historic village of Abyaneh, Iran.

The brilliance of a man named Gaudi who gifted the world with his art.  We should all be thankful.

Padron peppers and Sangria, the almost perfect combination of flavor sensation, but only when in Spain. You know, because they just don’t taste the same anywhere else.  I was thankful over and over again while in Spain.

Thankful

Padron peppers and Sangria in Barcelona.

I am happily thankful for my new hiking shoes, which will carry me on another long distance adventure come spring when we will once again be gifted with goodness.

And chocolate.  Because.

Thankful

Nothin more exciting than new hiking shoes.

These are just a few of the gifts of goodness that crossed our path in 2015.  So, while the mass media continues to spew out ugliness and the state department issues travel warning reports of where not in the world to travel, I encourage you to read the words of Rick Steves and discover for yourself how beautiful the world can be when we keep an open mind.  We wish you continued safe travels and encourage you to look for the goodness in not only your travels, but in your daily lives.  It’s there.  We just have to look for it.

Happy Thanksgiving!

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