January 23, 2013 Amtrak: Denver-Los Angeles
- Once on a trip to Yosemite, my friends Zach and Jenny and I were driving in the crowded middle lane of the freeway when I asked Zach why he wasn't moving into the carpool lane since there were three of us and that was our privilege. After a few minutes and some thought Zach said, "I think it is because over here is where the people are." And I have thought about that comment many times since then. I, too, really enjoy being where the people are.
- I've been thinking about pivotal words; about the people who have offered them to me; about being a part of people’s stories by the words I say to them. It requires being intentional. It means contributing. And encouraging.
- The red dirt here in New Mexico makes the banks of snow beside the train tracks pink.
- Wrinkles do neat things in the sun.
- Go live in New Mexico—in one of those tiny little towns where laundry lines hang in everyone's back yard.
- I care too much about what others think and it prevents me from really seeing the world as it is. It's so much easier to say I saw something the way it has always been seen. People are more likely to accept what you do, make, or believe. But that isn't seeing, it's just repeating.
- Reading Refuge by Terry Tempest Williams. She is a big time birder. She wrote this paragraph about lists and the last line is my favorite. I need to make lists like the birders--but instead of birds...blessings. She writes, "I love to make lists. Each task is of equl importance on paper. So pick up fresh flowers carries the same weight as do the laundry. Never mind that the pleasurable items are crossed off by noon and the difficult ones, meant for procrastination anyway, get moved to the next day’s agenda. The point is that my intentions are honorable My lists will defend me. But the life of a bird watcher is of a different order. It’s not what you cross off that counts but what you add."
- If I have a family, I will take them on the train. And when they want to walk from one end of the train to the other, I will be a yes person to them. I'll say yes, let's go, let's walk. And if I am going to be a yes person to them then, well, I better be a yes person now.
- Cute boy distraction: His shirt reads, "Real Men Love Cats." Everything about him is attractive—his notebook in which he is drawing interesting lines and writing numbers next to them, the hat he is wearing backwards, even his tennis shoes are attractive because they mean we could run, or get off the train in Albuquerque and explore, or play basketball. He is ready for anything. Have I over-analyzed him? Maybe. Do I wish he would come sit down and talk? Definitely.