“Everyone is trying to accomplish something big, not realizing that life is made up of little things.” – Frank A. Clark
Hello readers, and welcome back to Endless Seeker. Since my last published blog post, I’ve been away on a trip of a lifetime (and my first trip to Europe) to what most Americans refer to as Eastern Europe – the Czech Republic, Poland, Slovakia, Hungary, Croatia, and Slovenia – but which is actually geographically located in central Europe. These former Eastern bloc and Yugoslavian countries, like many in Europe, have endured the rise and fall of great and evil leaders, invasions from all sides, and bloody civil wars as recent as the 1990’s, but the people here remain proud, strong, and hopeful for a future that keeps them safe and happy and relevant in this global community.
I learned much about this region of the world, its people, cultures, and natural resources, and it has changed my perspective about many things, including how I view others through my own limited experiences and preconceived notions. It was a journey filled with beauty, history, nature, and surprises that I hope to share with you here during the next few weeks.
But first, I want to express my deep gratitude to our friends who shared in this journey (Dave, Debi, Jo, and John); to Keith, my partner in all things, but especially in adventuring near and far; to our tour guide, Jana, who made this an extraordinary adventure, and to the new friends we met in our tour group and all along the way.
While this trip had plenty of “Wow” and OMG! experiences, the highlights were really the subtle moments of observation or insight that came to me in quiet or unexpected instances while being fully present and hyper-aware in a particular instant of time. When I shared one of those observations with my son who travels the world more often than I do, he said, “those are the best kinds of moments,” and I know he is right.
One of those magic moments occurred our first night in Krakow, Poland. I was lying in bed in an elegant hundred-year old hotel room with the tall screenless windows open, sheer curtains billowing on the breeze. Soft voices drifted up from the sidewalk below, speaking in languages different from my own. Then the sound of horses hooves came clomping down the 14th century cobblestone streets, and I marveled that I was there in that moment in a city so filled with charm and beauty.
Life’s joys come in the little things, in the moments between then and next, where the present offers life and love and magic.
Thank you, Krakow.