History talks. She reminds us and shows us things. “I am not here just so you can recount stuff,” she said to me out of the blue!
And the conversation began.
“Do you remember when you used to think your path would never end,” she asked?
“I do, all that walking and all I could think of was my sore back and feet,” I replied.
“You were always in a hurry back then,” she scolded.
And I didn’t learn much either, I thought. “I just wanted to get over there as fast as I could,” I said meekly. “Now it seems I want to slow ‘er down a bit.”
These days I’ve been living and walking in the older version of me, in what now seems as though weeks are like days and the minutes have shrunk to seconds. I no longer want to hurry. I want to smell the air, hear the rustling leaves, even taste the earth.
“Well, you look much better, connected to the moment when you walk a little slower, don’t you?” History chided. I thought she was making fun of my gait. It’s true I am 57 years and I am not prepared to believe that I am that old either.
“Too bad time slowly washes us wrinkly white and we come out looking perpetually tired like a piece of driftwood,” I laughed.
“Why? It’s not all that bad. I like it when I see you stopping more,” History added with kindness. “Yes, that’s looks better on you.”
“Well, I guess I am letting things happen more. I don’t have to judge each moment like before. It’s like I can relax, stop and take it all in, the good parts and the boring bits.”
“Like the seals and whales,” History asked?
I remembered this history, to how I heard my traveling partner, Patricia, shrill with joy, “Seals!”
“Seals, really?” I stopped the car quickly.
And I glanced and I saw them too, those silvery grey wonders dancing on the waters of the Baie des Chaleurs. The doors opened as two humans crossed the road. I was running with my iPad in hand, and I jumped the fence and started filming those bopping seals. There I was, happy, all the while giving a running commentary.
“Ha! Seals!” I said confidently, “Look at them!” I continued while squinting my eyes against the bright sun, “See how lucky am I! God thank you, thank you! You knew how much this would mean to me.”
My traveling partner had her phone out recording too. Was she recording me? We had both watched long and hard for this, hours of travel along the coastline. It was either whales or seals we longed to see. And then after a few minutes, yes that long, I noticed the seals were not seals. I laughed to myself now knowing they were some sea birds bobbing for fish. I deleted my video, not in the least disappointed. It was the moment that counted.
And I have to admit that this story was repeated twice. Yep, it was actually the second silly moment of that day. This was the trip we saw seals and whales. And both times I deleted both videos and my commentary with it. It was really kind of funny.
History spoke up while chuckling at me, “You won’t forget this trip, will you? Those bird-seals and the rock-whales. However, the thing you should always remember is how you let the moments happen.”
I promised History to try and remember the lesson.
When I turned back towards the car and saw the happy eyes of my beloved traveling partner, they too reminded my heart. We were both learning to let things happen, no disappointment and without judgment. “It was not to be,” she said, “You always find what you look for, right?”
“Right,” I answered! “Let’s keep letting the moment happen.”
“And finding the seals and whales and the beauty of the moment,” she added.
Heaven surely must have laughed out loud as she looked down on us that day and wondered where we got our wisdom. You could say hearing History start up a conversation with me played a role in slowing us down.