Wednesday, December 28, 2011

To Make Music With The Heart.

On our first trip to Peru in July of  2000 we sailed the waters of the Amazon River on a beautiful 16 passenger private boat.  Along the way we met two young women, teachers from a village we had just visited, who needed a ride to a larger town so they could buy supplies for their small primitive school.  Our guide discretely asked Gene and I if we wouldn't mind helping them out by allowing them to board the boat then take them to town.  Of course we didn't mind...such a simple thing to do!  But Gene and I wanted to do more.  So through translation we made private arrangements to help buy the supplies. 

School in Peruvian Amazon, July 2000
When we returned from this trip we received a note with a check attached from one of our guests. Unbeknownst to us, she had observed what we had done and wanted to help us help others.  "I know the good you do, here is something to help you carry on."  Through the years we have continued to seek out opportunities wherever we are to make a difference however small.  Many times we have asked our traveling companions if they would like to come with us to a school in Bali, Costa Rica or Nicaragua, a clinic in Africa, an orphanage in China to help us help others.  Always the response has been generous.

Joanne Young handing out pencils in Bali.
This past November when we returned from Ecuador, again we received a note (from the same friend) with a check attached.  "Enclosed is a cheque to help support the charitable work you do on behalf of The Walking Connection.  Thank you for being a part of this global community."  What should we do, we pondered...

The next day I read an article in our local newspaper talking about our growing population of homeless and the great need at this time of year for blankets and warm clothing.  This was it!  This was how we could help NOW.  So I scoured all of the holiday ads looking for deals and headed out into the dreaded frenzy.  Blankets, gloves, hats and socks were purchased.  Cleaned out my closet. How many sweatshirts do I really need?  Gene did the same.  We filled our trunk, then our back seat and headed off to make our delivery.  This time not on the other side of the world, just a short journey about 30 minutes away. As we left the facility, once again I thought I want to do more. 

So as we travel the world we will carry on and continue to do what we do, near and far....To make music with the heart...
When the song of the angel is stilled,
when the star in the sky is gone,
when the kings and princes are home,
when the shepards are back with the flocks,
The work of Christmas begins;
To find the lost, to heal the broken,
To feed the hungry, to release the prisoner,
To rebuild the nations, to bring peace among the peoples,
To make music with the heart. *

P.S.: To "our friend" that keeps encouraging us and letting us know that what we do really matters.  THANK YOU!

*poem by Howard Thurman

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Missed You! Wish You Were There!

Jet black lava glistening as hovering bright red and blue crabs 
scatter out of the way. 

Our first dry landing a success, we are soon distracted by the approaching iguanas. Unlike the brilliant crabs, they become one with the rock. Blink once, twice to focus and they are everywhere!

It's a beautiful evening in the Galapagos as we are guided through a grove of Incense Trees. Now barren, but a promise that they will flourish with green when the rain returns. Stillness except for rustling in the brush. Stop. Quietly wait...

A golden 4 foot Land Iguana emerges. He carries on and so do we...

To the top of Dragon Hill, we look out at the unique and otherworldly atmosphere. Am I really here? I remind myself, "be in the moment" as we casually walk back to where the white sand and black rock engage. The sun is setting, but we don't feel rushed or hurried. Our yacht is patiently waiting, an ebony silhouette against the pink sky...and this is only day one...

Click on image to view our video!

Missed You! Wish you were there!