When you do things from your soul, you feel a river moving in you, a joy.
I learned…that inspiration does not come like a bolt, nor is it kinetic, energetic, striving, but it comes to us slowly and quietly and all the time, though we must regularly and every day give it a little chance to start flowing, prime it with a little solitude and idleness.
I grew up in a family that didn’t hike or camp. (It should be noted that some of us do those things now, but I’m writing about a time long ago, when I was a child and teenager.) We did go to the shore (it was New Jersey where it’s the shore, not the beach) for two weeks in August (usually the first two weeks of August), and days at the shore were spent mostly outdoors. We’d go out early in the morning (some of us early enough to watch the sunrise), take a break back at the rental house for lunch, and then it was back to the beach until dinner time. Evenings were usually spent outdoors, too. One summer my brothers and I got permission to spend the night on the beach. We stayed up all night, watching the stars and the meteors, and fell asleep just after sunrise. Those were the days, of course, when parents let their children run free as long as they showed up for meals and bedtime.
I spent a lot of time outdoors in my parents’ yard, climbing and sitting in trees (the sitting usually involved a book), running around with friends pretending we were pirates or royalty of some kind or superheroes. I played baseball with the boys in the lot behind my parents house. (No, I wasn’t good at it.) In the winter I would stay outside in the snow, when it snowed, for hours and hours, only coming inside when I was forced to.
When I was around 13 or 14 years old, my parents loaded us (me, my three younger brothers, and my baby sister) into a station wagon and we headed south to Virginia for an exploration of some of the Skyline Drive and the Shenandoah National Park. It was my first experience with mountains and hiking (albeit short hikes) and a cabin in the woods where we spent the night. I was awed by the views, the scents, and the sounds, and thrilled by the possibility and sometimes reality of wildlife. They had bears there!! (I’ve heard they have bears in New Jersey, too, but I’ve never seen one there and I don’t think they lived near where I grew up.)
Today’s April Love 2018 prompt is Inspiring film, and I wasn’t quite sure what to do with it until I thought about my childhood. In addition to logging some hours outside when I was young, I also logged quite a few hours lounging on the floor in front of the television watching television shows and movies. The films that inspired me as a child were films about nature and films about magic (Mary Poppins was the first film I saw in a theater) which means, for the most part, that I was inspired by Walt Disney. The Sunday evening show, The Wonderful World of Disney, also had an impact. Disney films (even the animated films) and television shows inspired my love of nature and made me want to get out and explore.
The prompt asks for one film and I’m hard pressed to name just one. As an adult, I am still inspired by films about nature and getting outdoors. As you know, if you’ve been visiting for a while, I have dreamed about taking a long walk, a pilgrimage of sorts. Three fairly recent films come to mind when I think of that: The Way (which is where I first heard of the Camino), A Walk in the Woods (about the Appalachian Trail), and Wild (Cheryl Strayed’s experience hiking the Pacific Crest Trail). I’m not saying they are necessarily good movies, at least not by the critics standards, but they are films that inspired and encouraged me.
There are many different ways to be inspired. There are films that have inspired my creativity, my compassion, and my sense of the goodness of the world and the people of the world (even in the midst of terrible times), but for a photo prompt, it was easier to go in the direction of the great outdoors since that’s where you’re most likely to find me.
What film or films have inspired you, and how have they inspired you?
Thank you so much for visiting on this rainy day. Be good, be kind, be loving. Just Be. 🙂
A few of the 10,000 reasons to be happy: 676) The peacefulness of the early morning, before the sun comes up over the horizon and wakes up the neighborhood roosters. 677) The things in life that inspire us to be who we are. 678) The most adorable picture, arriving via text message, of Little Wookie this morning. He’s staying with his other grandparents while his parents are traveling, and he appears to be having a fabulous time. I am grateful to his other grandma and her thoughtfulness in sending the photo. 679) The way the wind makes waves over the fields of wheat. 680) Tuesdays! Because the Camden Avenue Farmers Market takes place on Tuesdays. That’s probably where I”ll be when this scheduled post goes out.