I didn’t really want to come home. I wanted to stay hidden in the hills of northern Wales—to buy an old stone farmhouse nestled in the green but barren mountains of Snowdonia. With a view of the valley stretching out in front and peaks rising in the distance. Maybe some sheep wandering in oddly shaped stone bounded fields. And I would disappear into my daily routine – reading and writing and doing chores around the house. An occasional ramble on foot or on bike to explore the ancient landscapes – following the trails that lure me up and down the steep inclines.
But being a responsible adult, I didn’t honestly consider this. Honoring the path of the ticket already purchased. The sweet and sometimes sticky web of connection that is my daily life here at the Temple in Worcester. The ring of the doorbell 15 minutes before meditation. The friends and strangers that come – shyly or boldly to sit in silence – together. The sound of the bells and the familiar chants calling out for refuge. And the ten thousand pieces of plans and meetings, commitments and conversations that dance in the air. The ancient roads of community and practice – every bit as steep and dramatic as the rocky paths of Snowdonia.
Can I hide in these verdant hills? Can I disappear into the life that is already here? Just these dishes. Just this writing. Encountering each situation, each relationship as a new piece of geography – a new perspective in the wild and familiar hills of being human. To wander in this landscape of aliveness with fresh eyes and clear intention.