Watch­ing the World go by with ‘ Way­farer’

Evergreen - - Contents -

Have you ever watched deer run? Well… they don’t run so much as bound.

The dogs and I stepped out of the wood and sur­prised four young deer in the open. They did that freeze-and-he- won’t- see- us thing. So I stood and watched for a mo­ment, then I gave them a lit­tle, friendly wave.

Then they moved! Across land that was swampy in places, rocky in oth­ers, over­grown with bram­bles, weeds, shrubs, net­tles, the deer fam­ily cov­ered half a mile in what seemed like three seconds. Wow! How did they do that? Not by run­ning. Peo­ple would have tripped within a few steps, tan­gled up by all that un­der­growth. Even the dogs would have had a hard time. Be­cause we are all too close to the ground.

The deer hardly touched the ground. They took off, cov­ered eight-toten feet be­fore touch­ing down, then took off again. The big­gest part of their trav­el­ling was done through the air. No ob­struc­tions! Which got me all philo­soph­i­cal.

Most of the dra­mas in our lives tend to be “un­der­growth” stuff. How about if we spent a lit­tle more time “in the air”; spent less time on what he said, she said, or how much you wish you had the other fel­low’s car, or car­ry­ing a load of hurts and in­sults you have col­lected over the years?

Imag­ine step­ping ( bound­ing) away from that to a place where we are more in­ter­ested in spread­ing love than in gath­er­ing wealth; where

we hap­pily carry peo­ple’s bur­dens for them in­stead of be­ing mis­er­ably weighed down by our own.

We would still be touch­ing ground but, spir­i­tu­ally, it would be like fly­ing. And that’s a much bet­ter way to travel.

My dear ( not deer) friend Mag­gie trav­elled the higher way when, aged 67, she left the im­me­di­ate vicin­ity of our town for the first time in her life. And she met plenty of fel­low “high­fly­ers” along the way.

She was vis­it­ing an old friend who was ill — and lived 400 miles away. She felt the sit­u­a­tion was too se­ri­ous for let­ters and noth­ing would do but a per­sonal visit. But she had no car, and no one to ac­com­pany her. Still… off she went.

De­spite not be­ing at all fa­mil­iar with the route, she made ev­ery train and bus con­nec­tion, had her case car­ried a few times, was bought sev­eral cof­fees, and met noth­ing but help­ful, friendly peo­ple. Oh, and she also did her friend a power of good be­fore head­ing back home again.

Telling me about it af­ter­wards, she couldn’t get over how she’d been helped at ev­ery step of the way.

“Did you tell peo­ple it was your first time away from home?” I asked.

“Why, I think I told them all,” she replied.

“And did you tell them why you were mak­ing the trip?” I asked. “It only seemed po­lite,” she replied. Well, therein lies your an­swer, Mag­gie. Who, hav­ing heard about it, would not want to be part of such a beau­ti­ful, lov­ing jour­ney?

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