I just returned from a wild, flurry of travel, work, family, friends and connection. I don’t know the miles covered but I did fly, drive, ferry and taxi – on either side of the country and across the border into Canada. I am bone weary. I am also spirit filled.
The trip was designed around a client event outside of Baltimore. It was a one day strategic session with a power company. What was best about the work event was that we got to witness and see the transformation from where we first met with them and now. The day was excellent and very full.
Baltimore was buzzing. With the Ravens playing for a spot in the Super Bowl and Obama just a short hop away signing on for another term. Celebrations and good cheer were easy to come by in the inner harbor area. We had planned a strategy session for Thrive! with a Boston colleague, Jessica Steward. The time spent was awesome. We dove into some great dialogue and I believe crafted a clear path towards our new refresh and Whole Person/ Whole Team approach to our business.
Aside from the work, we had great fun and deep dive discussions between sessions. When we got on our plane to Minnesota, we were both thrilled with the effort and excited about the next steps.
Our paths divided in Minnesota, CrisMarie came back to Whitefish for play rehearsals. I headed towards Nanaimo for a Faculty Steering Group meeting at the Haven. The ease and grace of the trip fell a part a bit at this point. My flight was redirected to Great Falls, MT for refueling due to some concerns about Vancouver weather and a possible diversion. We did make it, but two hours late. I still thought I would easily make the late night flight to Nanaimo but at the last minute the flight was cancelled due to FOG!! OMG! I was stunned. I found a bed and tried to pretend the fog would lift by morning.
No – when I woke at 4AM, I knew I had to make my meeting. I gathered my things and dashed downstairs and convinced a taxi to race to the ferry terminal across town. I just made the 5:15 AM ferry to Nanaimo. Me and ten other truckers. Two hours later, I arrived. Exhausted but ever so grateful to see Cathy, there to meet me and give me a big hug.
The meeting started quickly and we dove right in. I thought we had an awesome day. Mostly because we had the time to really have deeper dialogue and wrestle with our concerns and our direction. Sure, it wasn’t all easy but by the end of the day we had a strong plan for moving forward. So again I was fulfilled.
Next stop Seattle. But first a foggy drive south with another dear friend, Susa. It wasn’t an easy drive with all the fog and having had a long day.
But we had some great time to just chat and catch up. I landed at my sister’s totally wiped.
Normally, I would try to visit a bit but I was too tired. My plan was to get up the next day and drive down for a visit with my folks. My dad, 92, was under house arrest from his doctor – for two weeks. He was not thrilled. And honestly I think we were all a touch worried about how they were doing. I had a nice visit. Had the chance to fix lunch and take a walk with my mom. Mostly, I just liked the contact. At this point in their lives they live fully, and I think they are both aware that life isn’t a long- term guarantee. Each day and every hug a bit more important to stay in for.
I did get to visit with my sister and brother-in-law for dinner before catching a late flight home.
I’ve been home for a 24 hours now, and I am just very grateful for the trip. Bone weary from the travel, the distance and the effort but fulfilled by the wonderful connections and real, raw work that got done along the way. I call that spirit filled.