Sunday, August 29, 2010

Hiking Group - Deeply Rooted and New Adventures

It is hard to say goodbye to my dear friends who've hiked many trails together. Once again I hold back tears as it sinks in that I won't see them for 2+ years. Inshallah - God willing - that I succeed as a Peace Corps Trainee and Volunteer in Azerbaijan.

So pleased to see most of the hikers last night, but alas I was so engaged I never picked up my camera! As ever, the best food, gracious hosts, great conversation, and superb weather. And the most thoughtful gifts. What can I say to adding 20+ books to my Kindle, a 2011 calendar of Twin Cities photos, the words to Edith Piaf's No Regrets, Thomas Reiss's bestseller The Orientalist, and a gorgeous farmer's market bouquet. All made the more special with this newly treasured t-shirt. The flowers and shirt inspired this photo which I staged as another memory of this great group of friends.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Going Low Tech

College friends are indeed forever. And my classmates from the College of St. Teresa, Winona MN understand what it means to keep a journal. It is more introspective than blogging, so I will treasure their beautiful gift of a leather-bound journal plus their many kind thoughts and prayers as I leave for the Peace Corps. I've added this photo from this morning's breakfast gathering.

And I've added the words to A Song of Peace which is sung to the tune of Finlandia - and which I mentioned as inspiring me even as a child to think of people in other lands having blue skies and clover - so they must have hopes and dreams of peace as I do.

This is my song, O God of all the nations
A song of peace for lands afar and mine
This is my home, the country where my heart is
Here are my hopes, my dreams, my holy shrine.
But other hearts in other lands are beating
With hopes and dreams as true and high as mine.

My country's skies are bluer than the ocean
And sunlight beams on cloverleaf and pine
But other lands have sunlight too and clover
And skies are everywhere as blue as mine.

O hear my song, O God of all the nations
A song of peace for their land and for mine.