Monday, September 8, 2008

Mountain Climbing

Climb ev'ry mountain
Ford ev'ry stream
Follow ev'ry rainbow
'Till you find your dream

A dream that will need
All the love you can give
Everyday of your life
For as long as you live

On Sun I went on a bike ride with my family, so it was my Mom and Emily, my sister and her 2 boys (2 and 3yr old) and I. It was totally a scene from the Sound of Music which we acknowledged by referencing most of the songs from the movie. My mom (as we grinded up a 0.25% incline) began singing "Climb every mountain," and, I don't know if I was just sort of hormonal or what, but the lyrics really hit me.

Work hard to find what you want in this life and then don't relent on making that happen.

Sometimes it worries me that at 26 (and RAPIDLY approaching 27) I am still on the dream finding part.

Running has helped me turn over new rocks and look for more within and outside of myself. Doing things that you never imagined you could (like running a killer 13miles on a Fri night!) does slowly begin to realign the boundaries that you set for yourself. So I am easing up on myself and trying to see where life takes me. But man is that hard!


It all goes back to reminding myself of the poem that was read to my incoming college class. The copy that was printed in the matriculation program has been with me ever since and is now hanging on my wall.


As you set out for Ithaka
hope your road is a long one,
full of adventure, full of discovery.
Laistrygonians, Cyclops,
angry Poseidon - don't be afraid of them:
you'll never find things like that one on your way
as long as you keep your thoughts raised high,
as long as a rare excitement
stirs your spirit and your body.
Laistrygonians, Cyclops,
wild Poseidon - you won't encounter them
unless you bring them along inside your soul,
unless your soul sets them up in front of you.

Hope your road is a long one.
May there be many summer mornings when,
with what pleasure, what joy,
you enter harbours you're seeing for the first time;
may you stop at Phoenician trading stations
to buy fine things,
mother of pearl and coral, amber and ebony,
sensual perfumes of every kind -
as many sensual perfumes as you can;
and may you visit many Egyptian cities
to learn and go on learning from their scholars.

Keep Ithaka always in your mind.
Arriving there is what you're destined for.
But don't hurry the journey at all.
Better if it lasts for years,
so you're old by the time you reach the island,
wealthy with all you've gained on the way,
not expecting Ithaka to make you rich.

Ithaka gave you the marvelous journey.
Without her you wouldn't have set out.
She has nothing left to give you now.
And if you find her poor, Ithaka won't have fooled you.
Wise as you will have become, so full of experience,
you'll have understood by then what these Ithakas mean

An alternative translation of "Ithaka"

Constantine P. Cavafy

And I think Mother Abbess is in agreement with the sentiment of Ithaka. While on this journey you should be looking for what you want but in the end, it is the journey that matters most.


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