This time of year I always journey back in mind to my own school years, and then my god children’s. At the first hint of fall, I unpack memories of what were some of the happiest of days - memories that travel with me.
My memories of the pleasures of fall, of greeting old friends and making new ones, were refreshed this year when I returned to give the commencement address celebrating our anniversary.
It was to this school I went on my first journey away from home, taking with me all the things my family had given me, especially my grandmother’s unfailing inspiration and good common sense. More important than the sweaters and books in my overstuffed luggage were the lessons she taught: Hold on to your dreams, do what you think is right, take joy in living each day. By example, she showed me the great potential women have.
I have taken many journeys since, and with each, added to the values I call the baggage of my life. (I use the word baggage in a positive sense, because the sum of our experiences determines who we are.) What I carry with me is pride in my feminine heritage, and what I have received is doubtless because of it. School, marriage, family, friends, career - so many priced parcels to take along, to serve me in the day’s to come.
I hope that the travels you undertake will remind you, as my grandmother might have, that happiness is in the journey.
for Anja and Clive