May has been an adventure-filled month with four weekend getaways, an assortment of potlucks, an underground caving excursion and a handful of powerful experiences.
My first weekend away was spent in the great outdoors, being joyful, meditative and awed by the grandeur of mother earth. My dear friend Sway and I took a road trip to an expansive nature preserve two hours north of Austin where we walked amongst the wildflowers, crawled in the grasses, sang to the trees and channeled our childlike selves.
I connected with the mischievous boy-like self of my childhood that I had almost forgotten while Sway channeled her inner faerie, and together we marveled at nature’s life forms while holding caterpillars and grasshoppers in our bare hands. It almost felt like time travel, as though we were transported to another time and place. In our frolicking on that blissful and carefree Saturday afternoon, I felt so connected to life, to nature and to those around me. I could have sworn that I was part of the Divine, receiving an early taste of the Garden of Eden. It was a good weekend.
During the second weekend of May, I traveled to San Antonio where I indulged in two live jazz performances, one art gallery visit and a snazzy hotel stay. I used my hotel points to splurge on a night at the Riverwalk Westin and savored every moment of the visit. Back in my management consulting days, I lived in the Charlotte Westin for nine months and grew quite fond of it, so everything about the Westin from the furniture to the scented toiletries to the lobby layout feels a bit like home.
Over the three days in San Antonio, I hiked in the nature of Mud Creek, lunched at a tasty kosher and vegetarian eatery called Green, playfully crossed the San Antonio River by foot with dear friends Kayak Dov and Blues Daniel, and joined the local synagogue for the most meaningful Kabbalat Shabbat that I have ever experienced.
Though the synagogue was Orthodox, I channeled the prior weekend’s nature-infused inspiration, sang loudly and “went deep” on my side of the women’s section. Following the service, the congregation’s black hat rabbi who I had met once came over to me and said in Hebrew: “That was the most beautiful prayer that I have ever seen. I would hug you if I could.”
The rabbi, who is in his 60s or 70s, paused for a moment and then added in a half-concerned manner: “Metaphorically, of course.” 🙂
Continued in “An Ode to May (Part 2 of 4)“…
posted by ayo