What a conveyance! A marvelous invention of mobility, the greatest aid on our journey. A good pair of shoes is everything. It can handle the road when it is a little rocky, or steep, or sandy or wet. It makes that long journey on that uncertain trail much more manageable. Imagine trying to hike that trail without a good pair of shoes. That would make for a long, laborious hike indeed.
Trails are such a funny thing. Smooth and flat one step, washed out and muddy the next. At any moment a rock or a bear can block your path. Cleverness and cunning can some times save the day. Or a good pair of shoes. If you're running from the bear.
My Aunt Audrey has taken another trail, one that I can't follow. She's gone to walk the path left by her beloved Conrad and her son, Michael. They wait for her up ahead, just around the bend.
My trail leads elsewhere. P'raps it will cross paths with her's someday.
If you're ever on a hike you should have two. One in case the other breaks. Shoes and a flashlight.
And a Handkerchief.
Things we need to make our trail a little easier, more navigable.
Sometimes our shoes wear out, the flashlight dies, the matches get used up and our handkerchief is torn, so we replenish and continue our hike on our long, long trail. But imagine how hard our journey would be without them? Our shoes, our light, our matches and our handkerchief.
Shoes are the armor, our toughness, our tenacity.
The flashlight, our guide, our protection against the shadow.
The matches, our warmth and energy.
The handkerchief, our blanket, our tent, our home, our shelter.
They are our companions on our trail. Our family.
What a trail it would be, rough and rugged, without such things to have around! We are saddened when we lose one, a little lost and forlorn, until a replacement can be found. Can we walk without shoes, a light, a fire, a blanket? Can we walk without our friends and family?
That's the wrong question. The right question is this: Would our family want us in the dark, lost on our trail?
Or did they leave us light, and hope and courage stored in a massive battery within?
Our feet are hardened by the long trail, our eyes sharp and focused with skills and wisdom. We are warmed by the sun and guarded by love.
We are built bit by bit by so many people to enable us to make the journey, the long walk on our trail. Michael instilled an enduring toughness and resilience. My Aunt Audrey was the hearth of the fire place, pushing back the cold. My Uncle Connie the guardian, his light pushing back the darkness.
My family wraps around me, a warm blanket, safe and snug, filled with hugs.
My trail leads on. Shoes, light, matches and handkerchief. My pack is light, filled with gifts left for me. Lessons, memories and love.