This could be a philosophy of life, but today I just want to talk more about the particular smell of a particular place. On my bike today I stopped to look at all the boats moored in the bay and noticed the smell of honeysuckle, beach roses [rosa rugosa], salt water, and seaweed on the rocks. I think even the sand of this island has its own distinctive smell. The trees themselves smell familiar. Each house has its own fragrance.
So often in life we don’t take time to notice our surroundings, let alone the smells. God gave so many sensory clues to remind us to “Be Here Now”, to live in the moment. I’m currently reading Love at Last Sight which is about building stronger relationships. In it I am confronted with my habit of only half listening as my daughter talks to me. I need to slow down, stop and focus on what she is saying, look her in the eyes. When I look at her she knows how much I value her and love her.
On my way home I saw something completely random; there was a man fishing in the field beside the elementary school. A peaceful spot, but the bay was teeming with fish just 1/2 mile away. I suppose he was practicing his casting, or perhaps trying out some new rods.
“People need to know where their place is, and lighthouses acknowledge a sense of place that resonates in a real primal way.” said Jennifer Radcliff, president of the Michigan Lighthouse Fund in an interview for the New York Times. There is something about place that pulls us.
Yesterday I walked down to the bay and visited a small organic farm stand before walking back through town. How I miss that small town experience where the gal at the farm stand called my mother by name and chatted with all her customers. Last night at a fund raising dinner, my dad knew many of the donors and guests. Today watching a boat race, he could identify various boats and their owners. Mom has cousins here, dad spent his summers here growing up; everyone knows everyone else. Yet, they are open and friendly.
There is only one blinking traffic light in this whole town. Yesterday I went for a bike ride and enjoyed the warm sun even as I struggled to peddle into the wind. There is a familiar smell when I return to this town and so many memories associated with being here. The views and fresh air are invigorating. The sun sparkling on the water, the breeze rustling the trees and picking up to create white caps. I feel alive in this place.
Del Tackett says, “Our personal worldview is the total set of truth claims that we have bought, consciously or subconsciously, which drive our emotions and what we think and so in unguarded moments – reflecting what we believe to be really real.” We all have a set of ideas about life and the world in general, but many of us hardly give it any thought. We take for granted so many things: consumerism, the sunrise, life itself.
Our worldview affects the decisions we make and how we choose to live. Our worldview can be passed on to our children, and I feel we should be intentional about this, thinking through our beliefs and helping our children to understand our point of view.