I was eleven when my grandmother (seated directly behind me) presented a special Christmas gift to my family. She wanted to take everyone to Europe for a 3-week whirlwind tour. Twenty-one countries in twenty-one days. Then, it was a dream. Something I didn’t even know was on my bucket list. It would take two or three more travels abroad before I truly understood what it meant to travel and how immersing yourself in a culture can broaden the scope of your horizons to immeasurable distances.
When we returned stateside, after our adventures, I had one more new adventure scheduled – a new school. Standing in line for registration, someone behind me asked what I’d done for the summer, and when I said I’d traveled to Europe, I was pegged as the rich kid. Thinking back on it now, I was a rich kid, but not in the way the kids meant, I was rich in that I had experienced a world, few my age ever gets to, but that seems now, to have been the purpose of my life. I’d been granted a lens, a different perspective from which to see the world.
Just last month, you may remember I mentioned my mother’s one-page document about how she felt during each phase, hospital and doctor’s visit, and daily life of a child with a heart condition.
Though each line stood out, this one fits this short post best –
Scared but yet hopeful and confident at every surgery-at the 1st surgery I bargained with God if He would let you live then I would let go and you would be a child of the world and you are!
I have traveled the Continent, studied in Austria, lived in the Czech Republic, and am planning to walk in the path of St. James in the coming year. The Path of St. James, more commonly known as the Camino de Santiago, is a 500-mile walk across northern Spain. Begin at the base of the French Pyrenees and end at the End of the World (Finisterra). Or begin in Lisbon. That one’s only 300-miles. But, since walking is good for your heart… maybe I’ll do both!