My teaching/artist residency for the academic year concluded with this visit and it was sweet. I've enjoyed getting to know everyone at Temple Chai and wish them much success and joy as they go forward with their new Cantor beginning in July. As I stood in the beautiful sanctuary on Friday night and prayed the silent Amidah, I thought about the first time I'd stood there back in August, and considered how much I'd learned over the course of the last seven months. While I could not ask for anything in my prayers -- it was Shabbat -- I could be mindful of how this opportunity had made me grow, had made me better as a musician and hopefully, as a human being. So I offered thanks for the opportunity, and tried to leave it at that.
But did I?
It is hard, very hard, to really focus your intention during prayer. The prayers themselves are supposed to help make it easier -- we are, after all, a people of words -- but in the end you still have to do the work of really taking the words into your heart and owning them. Even as I offered thanks for the opportunities this year has brought me, I knew that in my heart I hoped for more chances to travel, and make music, and grow.
I am home now for a couple of weeks. It was so lovely to wake up in my own bed this morning, to make up to my sweetie and our cats and our simple life here. I am tired this morning, even after breakfast and coffee. Honestly, air travel does tire me a bit; I don't think our bodies were really meant to hurtle through the air at 500 miles an hour, and I'm certain mine can't do it without experiencing some aftereffects. Still, I really enjoy bringing my music to new communities in far-flung places, the sense of adventure and the warm welcome I've received in every place so far. It's worth a little travel-lag.
And when I go back to a place I've visited before it's even sweeter because of the connections I've made there.
I am greatly looking forward to my third Incredible June and another session of Machane Jehudah camp. But today, there's laundry to do and bills to catch up on and a bicycle that has missed me and could use a spin around the neighborhood. So for today I'll enjoy the simple things about my simple life. May your week be equally sweet!