". . .cycling through circumstances, golden days and leaden ones." The day last August when I saw this wonderful painting was a golden one. The plan was for a carload of good friends to head out to the country for a picnic after they got off work at noon. Since I'm the retiree of the group with time on my hands, I was in charge of ordering up a catered--notice I didn't say cooking--lunch, including benedictine sandwiches and brownies. For the non-southern readers, benedictine filling is a delicious concoction of cream cheese and grated cucumber, tinted the palest green and spread on whole wheat bread. Our destination was the Smith Berry Winery and Amyx Art Gallery about a 45 minute drive out of Louisville.
When we arrived at the winery we set up our picnic under this grapevine covered pergola. We had the place all to ourselves except for Rose (appropriately name for the resident winery dog) who was willing to share our benedictine sandwiches. After lunch we went through a special exhibit of all dog paintings by the artist Betsy Hall. Each of us "picked" the one that we'd take home (for me that would have been Night Sky Border Collie) if money were no object. We closed out the golden day with some wine sampling and purchases and made the return drive over beautiful country roads, laughing and talking over each other all the way.
Unfortunately, all days can't be golden. Things happen to us, or to those that we love, that are really bad. Sometimes we're on top of the world and at other times the world is on top of us--or so it seems. In order to get through these good and bad times without losing equilibrium, I take the advice of life coach Victoria Moran when she suggests: "Just about everything that happens on earth comes to pass and not to stay. Circumstances do not deserve to have a hold on you, because they're already headed out of town and you're not going anywhere." Moran further cautions that it's easy for us to lose sight of the cyclic way of things, that we've been through hard times and survived, sometimes even triumphed. She says that when we hit a roadblock we just need to remember: "This isn't the end of the story. It's just a twist in the plot."
Rena Pederson, editor of the Dallas Morning News, sums up this challenge in her book, What's Next? Women Redefining Their Dreams in the Prime of Life: "Life is about reinventing and revising. You have to decide how to spend your days, because in the end that is how you will have spent your life." In other words, the real power comes from being able live out the golden and leaden days, knowing that we need both for a rich and enjoyable life.
Now head on over to Robin for some other Fun Monday participants' words to live by.