So I’m riding my bike yesterday in the glorious spring afternoon, red tulips and yellow daffodils blooming in people’s gardens, the beautiful river I live near swirling slowly along with ducks floating and bright green grass on its banks.
This gorgeous bike trail is smooth pavement, winding between tall poplar trees in straight lines, then pine trees and back yards, then out in the open along the river again.
A whole system of thought enters.
What am I doing here.
Kinda like the opening of Birdman.
Even though, when you think about it, I could be in a scene from a beautiful movie–and it’s where I actually live.
The thought started with something about the future, my youngest child leaving home in a year.
Mind running, as fast as this bike is moving.
I could hit the road and leave everything and everyone behind! Empty nest!
I could travel the world on a solo journey. I could go stay with Pema Chodron in her monastery for awhile. I could go to Bali and study some kind of exotic yoga. I could see weird and strange sights on this planet.
Let’s see….how much can I charge for rent for my cottage? I wonder what the neighbors pay for their home, I know they rent. I’ll copy that amount.
I really gotta get outta here, change it up, see the world.
I have limited time left. Things are declining body-wise. I’ll exit my primary relationship and ditch it all for a WalkAbout.
Earlier in the very same day, I’m guiding people in the Desire Course to question what they think is the problem that comes between them and what they desire….and identify what they really want to feel.
Ooops, I almost forgot.
Right there on the bicycle, seeing my shadow in the sun (wow!) watching a blue heron fly low and then land in the river, I notice who I would be without my thoughts of escape.
I chuckle, noticing how much I love that escape story.
That story where you change everything and everyone in your world and go on an adventure.
Don’t we love it? Bilbo Baggins takes off into the wild blue yonder.
But who would you be without that story (but only the parts where you think you’re trapped)?
Without the story that it’s required, in order to be happy?
It doesn’t mean I don’t go on adventures….it’s noticing I don’t have to. I’m not stuck. And this is it.
THIS is an adventure. Right here.
Even sitting writing this Grace Note, feeling the words pour forward, reflecting on how funny that thing was on the bike trail that went on an imaginary adventure away from the present moment.
Noticing I returned, I felt something watching and laughing at the mixture of ideas.
Coming back to the trail, the front bike wheel, the old woman with gray hair on her bicycle too, the eagle soaring above, the wind on my face, the man’s voice talking on his cell phone, twisting fast past the couple with the baby stroller, the thoughts swirling as much as the river, undulating and moving along, moving along.
Jesus was lost in his love for God.
His donkey was drunk with barley.
Drink from the presence of saints,
not from those other jars.
Every object, every being,
is a jar full of delight.
Be a conoisseur,
and taste with caution.
Any wine will get you high.
Judge like a king, and choose the purest,
the ones unadulterated with fear,
or some urgency about “what’s needed.”
Drink the wine that moves you
as a camel moves when it’s been untied,
and is just ambling about.
Much love, Grace
P.S. Breitenbush Retreat June 24-28 is filling quickly and early bird rate ends April 30th. Being With Byron Katie retreat July 11-14 is also beginning to fill (we will all watch Katie together here in Seattle all the way from Switzerland via internet). Register for either one if you want to make sure you’ve got space, especially good accommodations. Visit www.workwithgrace.com to find more information about either one!