But, none-the-less, here we are. The experience in NYC, all 15 years of it, has left me richer and poorer; more confident and more nervous; healthier and fatter; more known and more alone. In other words, it was and shall always remain a completely irrational experience. Personally and professionally. Either one. What happened there, especially at the end, makes little sense. Ok. It makes no sense. Just like any crazy time though we cant help but try to figure it out, to analyze it, to ask the probing question that will break open the kernel of worthwhile understanding that surely had to be the reason behind the madness.
Or we can make another choice. Select another view. That the experience lies not in the events but in the meaning we choose for them. The destination we choose after finding ourselves on the wrong road. When you finally turn around at the end, what then? Where Do you go then?
Those ideas were the foundation of the first sermon i attended at Riverside Church in March of 2012. They were the theme of the first Richard Bach book I ever read and my favorite John Steinbeck book too. All my life has been that question- from here where shall I go? That feeling of excitement of an new place- or a missed turn that leads to an unplanned encounter with a beautiful place or person. The truly Undiscovered Country.
My truth has come to be that the road doesn't really end, even though I have often longed for the ultimate destination. Perhaps there is no great answer. No pearly gate at the end of a path where I can set my bags down and find what I have been looking for. Perhaps home isn't the end of the journey but the journey itself?
Is it any wonder then that one of the things I was most excited to buy after escaping from my Alcatraz- was the latest edition of the Rand McNally road atlas? Or that I am so dedicated to getting my partner to come to love the idea of a road trip? Maybe NYC turned out not to be my home but a 15 year period of changing my tire on the side of a busy highway? Now, tire replaced, windshield clean; tank almost full again- I think its time to get back out there.