Monday morning and I am due to fly out of Denver DIA in a few hours. After yesterday's 180 mile drive to deposit the dogs with Roxanne, we assembled a gate for the completion of the dog play area. The boys will be well cared for with her and her 2 pups. That is a great relief. We had a fine steak lunch in Cheyenne before taking the shuttle to Denver. At some moment I realized that the things I could take care of, I had and what I hadn't would all be okay. I barely cleared the city limits when a great peace came over me, a welcome peace. I fell asleep and slept most of the way. A quiet evening of phone calls and reading.
During supper I think about some of the restaurants I've eaten in the last two weeks--great food and atmosphere in some well advertised chains (Red Lobster, Texas Roadhouse, Ruby Tuesday, McDonalds). They were all crowded with folks having a fine time, sure that they would have a meal just like they did the last time they were there. How does that fit in with our sense of regular liturgy--always the same food, pretty much the same atmosphere with the same crowd? How does that compare with the dinner party I went to with my parents at a local golf course where all the Mexican food was handmade by the Latino family who lease the restaurant? There was a different sense of pride in the offerings as they helped serve the food, served their own family in a corner, and joined the dancing to a 4 piece guitar/drum band playing rock oldies, country favs and Mexican folk songs. Lots more of the unexpected pleasures but with a familiar crowd to me (4 widows, 2 widowers, 4 couples all married close to 60 years; all of whom I've known all my life) Rawlins really does have some of the best Mexican food I've ever eaten and some of the nicest folks one would ever want to know or count on as friends.
I am so aware of God's grace this morning for all who have helped me come to this day of departure, wishing me well, bon appetite, bon voyage, prayers for fun, rest, renewal, the offers of assistance and places to stay. The readings of the Daily Office could not have been better, no doubt of another of God's graces. The story of Naboth's vineyard (I will soon be in a vineyard, but don't want to covet others as Ahab did); the story of Jesus' temptation in the wilderness as I begin my own journey that will require me to trust God in new ways as I experience new things traveling alone; the beginning of I Corinthians, the epistle I'd chosen to study while traveling since I will be seeing Corinth near the end of the travel.
So, here I go, ready now for the great adventure this will be.