Last week's blog post got a comment that was so complimentary I wondered if someone I know was teasing me:
Just wanted to know that I recently found your blog and I love it. I went back to January 2010 and read them up to the present. I love all of the adventures that you and Art are having. I read your entries regarding your 2003 schooner trip and I think that my spouse and I might do it. It sounds like so much fun. We have done one Road Scholar trip a couple of years ago and enjoyed it very much. I can't believe how many trips that you have taken. I need to get on the ball and your blog inspires me to do it. Love how you are giving back. Can't wait for your next post.
The commenter, "Dreamer," just joined blogger in July and I am the only blog they follow. What an honor that they took the time to read my posts.
Each year I've ordered a soft copy of my blog, so I have a written record, and I read a year's worth every once in a while. Prompted by "Dreamer" I pulled out the soft copy for 2010. I was six months from retirement and scared but excited. I had some goals. Uncertainties. Wonderings. Reading those pages brought the time back and I saw it in front of myself again, the memories fresh as yesterday. And reading that volume made me realize how much has happened between that first post and this one, my 448th. I'm a mediator now; Art and I have taken 40 trips within the US and internationally; we've helped build houses for Habitat for Humanity; Road Scholar produced a two-minute video clip about me; I've organized annual weekends for six fellow bloggers; we've found a winter residence in Tucson; I've saved a life with CPR; I've found a faith community; we've got a family community on our property after years as an empty nester. I still weigh too much, still keep a to-do list in spite of my better judgment, still spend too much on mochas. As far as I can tell, I'm the same person I was in January 2010. Just older, with a second cataract being removed in September! I think we all have multiple events happening over time, but unless we write about them, they may get lost in the memory.
One thing I'm especially grateful for is that keeping this blog has allowed me to identify and refine my values. At present, they are spirituality, health, community, curiosity, and purpose. I find that if I look at my life as I go along, I'm more content if life is mostly aligned with those values, in that order. At the moment I'm a little hazy on purpose. I wrote last week that I've been bored. Most of things I'm doing are not new and a few are getting a little stale. I'm encouraged, though, that the hazy one is number five on my list rather than number one. And not because I moved it to the end!
In two days I'm flying to Toronto, being picked up by a friend who lives a couple hours north of there. Judy was my neighbor in Tucson for a couple of years. She and her husband Ken sold their place but we are continuing friends. I get the giggles with Judy. We gossip. When my husband Art had a cardiac arrest last year, Judy was an expert I texted for the first 48 hours. I asked last month if I could come for a three-day visit. Judy suggested a week. I said, "Isn't that too long?" She said, "Why? Are you planning on being annoying? Bring a good book because you'll be sitting on the dock reading it." How lucky am I to be able to take this unscheduled trip?