I always love getting ready for a trip. Despite all the stresses of what I might be forgetting, and whether I’ve left myself enough time, there remains an undercurrent of excitement that I am about to embark on a new adventure, filled with creative exchanges, meeting new people and seeing new sights.
This time I am headed to Delaware, where I will teach Sonic Alchemy, and then on to Virginia, where I will perform at Blue Ridge Beltane.
As I pack, I realize this is the first trip I am taking with my Dad’s suitcase. I didn’t inherit much from my Dad, but I did get his suitcase, and with it, his legacy of travel. This is important to me.
My Dad loved to travel. He and my stepmother traveled as often as they could. They were both teachers and every summer they would make the most of their paid time off by exploring the world. They had friends in England, Scotland, Finland, and Thailand.
In Heathen folk tradition, there is a concept, “Hamingja”, loosely translated as the luck we inherit from our family line. I feel that the lineage of travel is a boon I have inherited from my father. For this I am grateful. Even at an early age we traveled. We lived in Thailand for a year when I was a teenager, and it has always stuck with me. Experiencing different cultures was very important to my Dad. He felt that we learn most about people, about the world, by experiencing the traditions of others. This instilled a respect for otherness in me at an early age, and it is an aspect of my family heritage that I am proud of.
Now, with the inheriting of this suitcase, the first proper suitcase I have ever owned, with wheels so I don’t kill my back, and a strategically planned design so that I can fit half my life into it and still maneuver the thing – It’ s like a Weasley tent, it is! – I am reminded of Hamingja, and of ancestral inheritance, and I am honored to carry this part of my father’s life forward into my own.
What is remembered lives, and I remember you, Dad, and I am grateful for the wanderlust you instilled in me. I am grateful for the yearning to experience this big ole world to the fullest, as you did. Thank you Dad! May I drink of life as deeply as you did, and keep those things alive that held meaning for you, as they now do for me.
May we meet again on the long road.