18 April, 2015

Four random thoughts

I've reflected before that often when I have more time to think, I have less time or no opportunity to post here! That's what last week was like. Lots of time, little opportunity. 

The place we camped had almost no mobile access and certainly no internet. It was tucked away in the hills, far enough from any town that we saw no lights at night except the bright moon in the clear night sky.

But here are some random thoughts that I did remember and write down when we got back:

  • We're a camping family. All boys loved the camping trip. They grumbled as we packed to leave, but all enjoyed. It's five years since our first camping trip and we've truly become a camping family. Five years of camping. In five years we've erected our tent 16 times in Japan, a couple of campsites we've been to two or three times. Seven of those times happened during our two-week camping tour of Hokkaido. We've camped four times in Australia (not counting our Uluru trip, which was like luxurious camping, in a motorhome). That makes twenty camps in five years over 13 camping trips. Not bad! Averaging two or three trips a year is a pretty good rate.
This was the start of our 2 x 5km paddle. Tempers were
already flaring as we struggled to direct these superb
canoes out of the inlet.
  • Canoeing is about control. We had fun in the canoes, but we also had struggles and fights. In the end, canoeing is about control and how much you're willing to let others control your direction will determine how comfortable a ride you have. Some of our children coped better than others, but all three struggled with distrust. And once you're out in the water, you can't run away and hid somewhere, somehow, if you are to get to land, you have to forge a working relationship, no matter how mad you are at the other person.

  • Grief. Our youngest son was upset on the first night after camp. As I talked with him I realised he'd really enjoyed camping with extended family . . . and felt the grief of not being able to do that in Japan.
  • It's hard to settle back in your home country after being a missionary. We're "scarred" for life. We visited a family, with similar aged children to our own, who we met in Japan. They spent two terms there, but have been back in Australia for about 10 years now. There is still a part of them left in Japan, that will always be a part of them and make them always feel on the edge of ordinary in Australia.

No comments: