For this week’s Lens-Artists Photo Challenge, Amy, whose unique blog The World Is a Book, set the topic this week with two key words: Precious Moments. And since Bert and I will be celebrating our 53rd Wedding Anniversary on December 27th of this year, we’re reflecting on just a few of our many precious moments and good times.
One constant in our marriage is a love of travel even if we just took short trips to visit our parents, attended an out-of-town football game, or combined business with pleasure. But little did we know when we married how many precious moments would create the patchwork of interesting times, people, and places that is our life together.
Like the time we climbed hundreds of steps in 105-degree weather to gaze at a sight we’d only seen in books — the town of Manarola in Cinque Terre, Italy (pictured above) — and, almost as if we had rehearsed it, said to each other, “Can you believe we’re here? Finally here?”
Another precious moment? The day we stood on the steps of NR. 125, an elementary school in Bucharest, Romania, with a team of Habitat for Humanity volunteers from the U. S. and our leaders (on the first row) from Bucharest. We were smiling: tired but proud to have renovated a building, making it safe for kids who would be arriving for school in just a few weeks.
In another year with yet another group of Habitat workers, we took time after building a concrete house in Lesotho to go on safari at The River Lodge at Thornybush Game Reserve near Kruger National Park. Just imagine the precious moment as our Jeep came to a stop, putting us face-to-face with this majestic king of beasts. (I could hold my breath and refrain from speaking, but I couldn’t silence the camera clicks. Yes, nervous!)
Equally majestic was this face as well — one of four facing north, south, east, and west — on the Boudhanath Stupa in Kathmandu. As we walked the perimeter of one of the grandest stupas in Nepal, we barely spoke to one another, respectful of the Buddhist pilgrims joyful at finally reaching their long-awaited destination and the priests unrolling their mats, kneeling, and bowing to say the prayers of their faith.
Not all precious moments occurred in full light. One October morning when almost no tourists could be found on Monhegan Island, Maine, we left our bed-and-breakfast, sauntered past clapboard houses in the dark, and stood alone as pinkish light, pale and early, bathed the lighthouse with ribbonlike colors of dawn. I was indeed a special morning in Maine.
But for all the places in the world, the people, buildings and famous sites, there are still no moments more precious than the ones we’ve spent with family. Whether we’re home in Knoxville with our “kids” (OK, they’re grown, but we still call them “kids”), on a sandy beach together or just rocking our granddaughter, our best moments are with the ones we love.
May you, too, share many precious moments with the people you hold dear.
Rusha and Bert