The Peace Artist is in Port Angeles. I have to admit, the movie twilight paints an ominous picture of this town, as if there are wanton hoodlums all over this town ready to pounce on wayward young girls who have wandered down the wrong alley. Quite the contrary, it is a beautiful little town with great architecture, friendly people, and lovely waterfront.

I’ve been following the Olympic Discovery Trail for some time now. It is intended as a bicyclists paradise, and it’s aim doesn’t land far from the mark. Beauty at every turn.

Olympic Discovery Trail

I don’t know if I am necessarily the best person to write a blog right now. I am 5 days and 100 miles into this pilgrimage. 5 days of being alone with your thoughts all day long. 5 days of contemplating the universe, God, the purpose of life, and one’s effectiveness at achieving love, compassion, and peace on earth— and in one’s heart. I might be crossing over into “crazyland”, or I might just be asking the most honest questions that the rest of us are too afraid to wrestle with?

I’m not going to lie, the bird incident shook me. I have done everything I can think of, read in the bible, or learned from any other religious text, shaman, or guru. I have stepped out in faith…I expected it to live. When I tried to use “faith” to correct my bicycle wheel, it was for me. When I laid hands on and prayed for my niece to be healed, in someways that was for me, because I love her. But, healing this bird—that wasn’t about me. I didn’t benefit in anyway. It was merely to love something beautiful, to give life another chance.

The whole next three days, I’ve been arguing with the earth, heavens, universe, “God” about it. Yesterday, my knee began to hurt. I became acutely aware, that as strong, as able, and as knowledgeable as I am…I don’t think that I can do this. Because of my knee I’ve been reduced to walking. I was hitting bottom. The more I thought about the bird, I became really honest with myself about it. I found that it was me trying to test “God”. As, I found out, I was the one who was tested. The bird didn’t matter, healing, raising from the dead, walking on water none of that matters, it is a side show. On the main stage, the central attraction about life is each other, it is love, it is compassion.

I knew this, but got enveloped into the theatrics of what I am doing. At this point, I put on my earphones and listened to an album that has played a pivotal role in my and Scaughdt’s lives…and I lost it.

Father won’t you carry me
For the ocean is wide
Father won’t you carry me
For my boat is small

Father on the moonless night
Help me cross the stormy sea
Out here in the darkness
Help me find my way back home

Here I was walking down the street weeping, and the only place I could go, was to “IT”, and surrender. Then, in the middle of nowhere, and I mean nowhere, someone had written in chalk on the asphalt: “I can do all this through him who gives me strength”. After that, I placed one foot in front of the other.

This isn’t the Disney version, this is the real Forest Gump.

After giving up hope of doing this on my own, I stopped at Speedi-Mart, and Anne was kind enough to allow me to get some water. She asked me about my tunic and my trip, and then gave me two bags of Trail Mix and a hug. After the day I had had, I needed both. Bliss. I was able to give her a drawing, and then I advanced on. Not a minute later, a man named Nick pulled his car over and gave me two big bottles of water. When I crested the top of the hill, the sign said, “Abundant Hope”, and a man named Eric allowed me to camp behind the school he was the grounds keeper for.

I woke this morning with no more doubt, no more reserve, no more worry. The universe has given me berries of every kind, rose hips, bull kelp, sea lettuce, and purple laver to eat today. I can’t run, but I can walk without pain, and I can draw. Be at peace dear friends, I am.

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