the ground of our beseeching (thoughts from Dickey Ridge)

The appeal of traveling slowly, or what it has in retrospect, in the timeless aspect acquired as it is dwelled upon, in the moments between, before, and after travel–is the simplicity. There is but a limited array of labors to devote yourself to, and so it is easier to accept and be devoted to them more fully.

There is a time for heroism and greatness, a time for dispensing wisdom, and a time for making decisions and taking actions that will have a great and lasting effect on your life and the lives of those around you. But, as the Old Testament says, there is a time for everything. This is what Ghandi understood as he raised crops and spun thread in his quieter hours.

For me, travel is a narrowed playing field for the choices of the moment. And like a child in preschool, I make my choice from the limited options and I grow and learn from it.

The moment is everything. It is all we have. Whatever greatness has been expressed in your past is over; its validity has passed. Only what you are doing at this present moment matters. And at home there are so many choices that it becomes bewildering and tends toward dissipation. We plan and we scheme and we work to determine just what it is we should be doing–and much labor is lost in the process.

This is my problem with cars, with the schizophrenic modern mode of living: so much time is spent in transit, in the planning of places to be and the time it takes to get there. Not to mention the acquisition of the means to do so.

So for me, all travel, including my commutes in Columbia, is an opportunity to exercise my appreciation for and understanding of the moment at hand. And, for me, this is best accomplished by forgoing the speedier conveniences–the going that is fed by foreign energies–and by letting my body determine my progress. Because the battle for the supremecy of the moment, which holds the prize of right action, will not be won on this or any journey. It is the battle of a lifetime.


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