Friday, July 24, 2009

Brookgreen Allee

Allee is a French word that means, 'a walk lined with trees.' Three cheers for the French who've given us wine & cheese, amazing pastries and cool words! I was just in Myrtle Beach, SC, and at Brookgreen Gardens. If you get to MB - take the time to go to Brookgreen, and take some time when you're there. Wander through the sculptures and the gardens and reflect at the pools. Flirt with the green/brown bronzed naked ladies! Catch a tadpole. Experience the wonder and beauty of it...and then have lunch. When you're done, save the live oak allee for last...

I was debriefing a meeting with a recently found friend and she asked, "how was your trip." I veered away from business... "I was a Brookgreen... it's beautiful... and the best part is this path flanked with ancient live oak trees. It's just such an amazing place to stand, reflect and find yourself - or whatever it is that you're looking for." Her reply caught me off guard, though it shouldn't have, "So, what did you find?" My answer was lame, "I found an hour with no responsibility." We both laughed, and went on with our business - but my mind, or perhaps my heart, never left.

What did I find this time in my beloved allee? Peace and wonderful aloneness that some probobally call solitude. Communion with God that most would call nature. And a wonderful sense of my mortality...that knowlege that life is so much bigger than I am, and somehow that thought brings me peace. The knowlege that everything is going to be OK. That I love and am loved. That I matter, and there are those who matter to me. That life matters and that my contributions make a difference even if to only one at a time. Those trees, if they had souls, could tell me of the hundreds of men and women who have stood there before me, pouring out their hearts silently into the wind. Perhaps that's what give life to these ancient live oaks? Life is hard sometimes, it's supposed to be, but if she were to ask me again what I found, my answer would be a little more precise, "me." I hope you all have this experience in that place that's called yours, wherever it may be. And I hope you find that in it all, you matter.

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