Sunday, April 07, 2013

Old Friends

This past Friday I got out of bed in the early morning in acticipation of a day off from work.  Such days fill me with joy.  I do not hate my job or where I work.  The joy comes from a love of personal freedom.  I dropped my wife off at her office and then proceeded up the ramp to Interstate 65 South.  The early morning rush hour in the downtown area is usually maddening and intense but this particular morning the traffic seemed light and I wondered where everyone was.  I love the feeling of getting farther and farther away from the city.  You can literally feel the stress and tension leaving your body.  Jamming to Indian music and anticipating the sunrise I quickly got into a pleasant groove and I headed for the home of my friend, Fr. Dennis.  Soon I was off the interstate and enjoying the rural highways, lost in my thoughts, and feeling good.  When I finally got to the road where the monastery is located and where Dennis lives, the sun was shining on the still frosted fields and hills.  It was quite lovely and the timing was perfect as the song "Here Comes The Sun" by the Beatles played in my car.  Soon after arriving at Dennis's home we went to a newly discovered bakery in Bardstown where I bought a cheese danish and raspberry filled donut.  I was full of guilt as I knew in my mind that such delicacies should never touch my lips.  The guilt was quickly overcome as I consumed them with fresh coffee.  Most of the day, including the time spent having lunch at a small Mom and Pop restaurant, was spent in engaging conversation about aging, shared memories, and the wonder of the journey of life.  I left in mid-afternoon to pick up my wife and go in search of a First Communion dress for my granddaughter.  The drive home from Dennis's is never as enjoyable as the drive there.  Driving away from Louisville one can feel the stresses and tension of life falling away.  Returning home and going from the slower pace of a small town to the hustle bustle of a fairly large city, one can feel the stress and tension of life coming back.  I am grateful I can experience these occasional slices of freedom where I can do whatever I want.  Someday, and that day is not too far off, everyday will be like this.  Friendships and days off are wonderful.  Cheese Danish and jelly filled donuts aren't too bad either.

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