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  • Daniel Francis

Munching on Memories

On the exact day of the month we got married and for every month of that first year, no matter the weather or temperature, Alice and I had a ritual: go to the grocery store to pick up a pre-ordered cake (identical to the one we had for our wedding) then head to the Gulf of Mexico, about 50 minutes from our home. Twice we got there only to take a quick walk before sunset (due to the job I had at the time); another month it was so cold (yes, in Tampa!) that we ate our cake in the car; but it never rained and on many occasions we were able to swim and sun and read and eat, enjoying the mostly isolated beach time.


Due to COVID-19 we're trying to do our part to flatten the curve and so we've not been to the beach and probably won't for the remainder of the year. We're fine with that- it's a small price to pay for the overall health of our city, state, country and world. The wonderful thing is that we hold memories of our twelve months of beach trips and have the confidence that we'll return- shortly, we hope.


Recently, our friend Carole sent us this weblink to an article whose author described beach activity as a metaphor for learning from life. One lesson in particular caught my eye: Seek Out Calm Waters. Yes, you can boogie board or surf the waves or float on your back or sit and splash...but there is that place just beyond the breaking waves that is an oasis. Sometimes it's even a sandbar you can stand on! Like this pandemic, the onus (and opportunity) for us is to look for and find new places of peace- harbors in the storm, jetties for protection. Perhaps for you that's a meditation app or a walk in a park, maintaining physical distancing. Maybe you can try yoga for the first time or take it up again after many years, or click on a Youtube stretching video that connects you with your body and links you to your inner fulcrum. You see, our primal posture is peace. What the beach (or your favorite place) does is simply REMIND us of what is inside.


Other resources are Alice's guided meditations here.

Find your oasis this weekend. Seek out your calm seas amidst these crazy times. Your future self with thank you and it will provide memorable munchies for grateful grazing.

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