Good morning.

I am pre-caffeine this morning, so I beg your pardon if this post comes out wonky. I woke to a quiet house and one thought, “I must be tripping.” It is not meant as tripping on acid or some other drug concoction, but rather dreaming of trips I have taken in the past. I am a native son of Mississippi, and in my opinion, my home state is beautiful. Mississippi is rich in history, some good and some bad. Sure, we participated in the Civil War, and we made mistakes concerning slavery. We also created Barq’s Root Bear and the Blues. Many celebrities come from here, whether they are writers, musicians, singers or actors.

Surely, I am trippin’.

As much as I love home, I like to get away from here as often as possible. My career in the military allowed me to travel extensively. To name a few places I have visited, here are a few examples: Scotland, Ireland, France, Germany, Luxemburg, Austria, Spain, and Greece. There is something wonderful about visiting a place to get a sense of the people. This love of wanderlust allows one to absorb a small taste of the culture of a place. An insider’s peek of the history that is on full display for the world to see. Personally, I enjoy the food. In my opinion, if you need to judge a place’s vibe quickly, go to dinner. Everyone let’s their guard down when they are eating.

Of all the places I have visited, Ireland is perhaps my favorite trip. My family was with me, and we stayed in Killarney, at a bed and breakfast named The Deer Pasture (Glenfia Inn.) We spent a couple of days wandering around Killarney, taking in sights and talking to the locals. We took a carriage ride out to Mucross Garden and it rained the whole time.

The last day of the trip, I rented a car and started our journey around the island. The grassy pastures gave way to the ocean. As I followed the road, it led into the mountainous region and we stopped and took photos of a prison built upon a huge boulder which jutted out of the ocean. I didn’t want the trip to end prematurely, so I drove slowly on the way back to Killarney. We made our way down the mountain and as we came around the curve, a beautiful lake lay below us. The sun radiated off the glassy surface, and in the moment, it was the most beautiful sight I had ever seen.

In my mind’s eye, I can still see it. I hope I never forget it.

The value of a trip lies in the moments which stir the emotional side of the individual. The lake in Ireland enthused something deep within me and it has ingrained itself into my memories. There are other aspects of the trip which are equally as ingrained but there was something deep about the view of the lake which stirred something in my heart that I will never forget. So, if you get the opportunity to travel, take the time to enjoy it. Find something which will stay with you the rest of your life. Otherwise, what is the point?

23 January 2020

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