The Beach or the Mountains

One of the things we all need to rejuvenate is time away from the ordinary.  These opportunities to get away from our everyday demands is the fodder for re-creating and refreshing our mind and soul.  For most of us this is found in the vacations or recreation opportunities we choose.  Of course, most people think about retreating to the beach or the woods (mountains) when they plan their time off.

For me, both venues offer wonderful opportunity to think, plan and become more philosophical.  Since the earliest years of my work life, I have opted for both venues and have found solace at both the beach in the summers, and the mountains to ski in the winters.  In fact, I wrote 3 of my earliest books (Interdependence, 1991, Beyond Difference, 1995, and Cultural Shifting, 02) while on vacation at the Outer Banks.  There was something about depth and breath of the ocean, not to mention the odors and sounds associated with the surf, that pushes your thinking to deeper places.

But as I write this blog, I am in the Colorado mountains at the Copper Mountain ski resort with my family.  We are enjoying not just the good company, but the blue, cloudless mountain scenery and the perfect ski conditions.  There is something about the sounds of the wind through the trees as we make the long runs through the timeless slopes.  It is occurring to me that the balance of the ocean and the mountains has been perfect match for the deeper thinking I have done over the years and the re-creation of self so important to a more purposeful life.

I read somewhere that our native Indians had an understanding that being in the mountains put you closer to the higher spirits.  That in a way, put you closer to God, the Great Spirit.  Now I don't know for sure, but I do know that for me this seems to be true.  When I am in the mountains there is something unique that I feel.  It may not be exactly a higher purpose, but a more fundamental realization of self, of purpose, of duty.  It makes me feel more alive and cognizant of direction and purpose.

So how about you - where do you find your purpose - how do you re-create yourself to be able to withstand the everyday clutter that can dull the senses and flatten life?  Be it the beach, mountains, or some other setting, make sure you get there on a regular basis.  Life is short and purpose is critical.