For today’s Friday Five, tell about five different trips you have made in your life due to different reasons, modes of travel, or whatever category you choose!
Since I couldn't play Friday - being off-line and all, I'll take a shot at it today!
There have been so many trips, it's a bit hard to narrow them down.
1. 1965 our first trip to Switzerland as a family to visit all our relatives - grandmas, aunts, uncles,
cousins. We were there about 4 weeks and I remember all the visits to relatives, which when you
are young are not all that interesting. We traveled around some, hiked and had fun just living with
my Grandma and step-grandpa. They hung a swing - wood board with heavy rope in the doorway
of their shed for us. The attic was wonderfully huge and empty. I never did make it to the origin
of the canton's river source as I was too scared of the falling, rushing, frothing water and the
wooden walkway that lined the rocky dark canyoned walls. My step-grandfather stayed back
with me. Guess that's where my fear of high bridges over water comes from!!!
2. Summer camping trips all over the US to national parks and historic sites. Yellowstone was
one of my favorite places - chock full of a variety of natural wonders. Yosemite and Sequoia
were also great as were the Smoky Mountains. We would go to the evening ranger programs
and also Sunday morning worships services in the great outdoors. We would hike, and see
the beauty of creation and its wonders all around us and of course, all kinds of flora and fauna.
It was a great way to spend time together as a family and to see so much of America.
3. When I asked LH what he wanted for his 50th birthday and he answered Scotland! So, we
went and had a marvelous time walking all over Edinburgh, the drive to Oban, our time
on Iona and the week in Ayr seeing Culean Castle, Robbie Burns' cottage, Hadrian's Wall.
And of course, Lock Lomond, and Lock Ness with its elusive Nessie! What a wonderful
time we had together, even when the hotel in Oban never received our reservations and
we ended up at another older hotel that was actually in walking distance of the downtown.
It all worked out well.
4. The fast plane trip to Florida when on a fateful Friday night my Dad called in tears saying
my Mom was dying. I booked a flight for the next morning, I called the Stated Clerk of the
church I had just begun serving as an interim and made countless phone calls through the
pulpit supply list til I reached the very last one who was able to cover for me that Sunday.
I got to Florida at 10 am Saturday morning and my sister got in from Chicago just an
hour later. Mom was lucid and still mobile and thrilled to see us both. She died on Friday
and we had the week with her and Dad, taking turns with care giving. It was a hallowed
time of much grace amid the great sadness and sorrow. I was thankful that I could be there,
that we all were there with Mom when she died.
5. Our very long trip to South Africa to visit a long time friend, whose Dad and my Dad
worked together in Africa - Ghana back in the 1940's. She grew up in Africa and I
grew up in the States. Over the many years, both families exchanged Christmas cards.
When I was in high school, she wrote a letter in the summer. I wrote her back and
we have written each other ever since and she made the occasional phone call from her
job. We have since gone to email and Facebook. We had never met and I longed to
meet her. She's such a stitch! And, we survived the 23 hour flight to Jo'burg! And
had the most wonderful adventure to meet her and her husband, to stay with them, to
tour Jo'burg, Pretoria, Cape Town and go on Safari. It was more meaningful because
I knew my Dad had been in Africa - ok - a totally different country, but nevertheless,
we touched the same continent and it was the most amazing experience, especially
worshipping with an indigenous Presbyterian church for two hours and sharing
holy communion with sisters and brothers in the faith who live such a very different
life on a continent a half a world away.
I have been greatly blessed and fortunate to have travelled all over the world and the US for a whole variety of reasons and each place and time has left its imprint on my life.