Sunday, July 11, 2010

And Time Goes By

It was the summer of 1972 when Grandma decided to take me on a summer road trip along the Bruce Peninsula in southern Ontario. I was a newly licensed driver and she gave me the wheel of the car for the entire trip which was a great confidence booster for a teenager. I dared not go above 50 mph on the highway (Ontario had not yet converted to metric measures) and Grandma made me pull over on the shoulder if cars behind were anxious to pass us. Our destination was Tobermory at the northern tip of the peninsula and we planned to board the ferry to Manitoulin Island. At that time the M.S. Norgoma, a 190 foot vessel, carried passengers to the docks at South Baymouth. We arrived and booked into a motel in Tobermory, but very windy weather prevented us from taking the boat across Georgian Bay for the next two days.

Young passengers on the Chi-Cheemaun

Today the Chi-Cheemaun, a much larger vessel, ferries vehicles and passengers both ways across the water from Highway 6 at Tobermory to the continuation of Highway 6 on the island. Last week I finally took the journey that Grandma and I missed almost 40 years ago. It seems impossible that so much time has passed since the summer I finished high school.

I returned from Mexico the day before we went north for our vacation. Mom had her first round of chemotherapy when I was there and endured a week of nasty side effects. She had her second round of treatment yesterday. Their home is situated in a beautiful area of the countryside in southwestern Mexico and I enjoyed the restful environment despite the circumstances around my visit.

Lighthouse on Cove Island

We do not know what the future holds and that is a good thing. A butterfly may live for days and its life is measured by moments. A bird may live a few years and its life is measured by weeks. A tree may live for hundreds of years with its life measured in decades. Our lives are a modest span that we measure in years. I couldn't help thinking as I spent time with Mom and Dad that they are living what my life may be in 20 years or so. And seeing how fast time has gone since that vacation with Grandma, those years may come before I am ready for them.

Perhaps life is best measured in "butterfly" moments, seizing pleasure and joy while releasing irritations and frustrations which drag us downward.


  1. So good to have you back Ruth! I am sorry to hear that she'll have to endure the chemo. I know it must have been hard to see her have all those unpleasant side effects. Time does go by so very quickly, doesn't it? Wasn't it just New Years Eve a bit ago? Love and warm hugs to you and yours my friend.

  2. Our years of life should be measured by moments. It is up to us to see that each moment is precious and memoriable. Beautiful post! Welcome home!

  3. Butterfly moments: I love it. The truth of it wings closer and closer.

  4. So nice you got to complete Grandma's journey. I'm sure you needed a vacation after the trip to Mexico. Hope your Mom is doing as well as possible. Yes, life is short, so we need to enjoy every passing moment.

  5. You have said it so well.We need to live each day to its fullest. I too am glad I don't know what tomorrow may hold,but I DO know Who holds tomorrow.

  6. Yes, and time DOES go by. It is relentless.

    Glad you are home again. Glad that you got to visit your Mom and spend time with her and other family members. Glad that we can trust God for his highest best.

  7. You are so correct. It IS a good thing that we cannot see into the future. Glad you are back. I'll think positive thoughts for your mom.

  8. Nice to have you back again Ruth. I have been wondering you and your family were doing. I have gone thru a similar situation and right now our minister's father is dying and has been given just a few days to live. Life is precious. We certainly need to make the most of it.

  9. What nice memories you have of that drive. Sorry aobut your Mom. That must be hard. Love the photo of the kids on the boat. And I truly understand how you feel aobut time flying and about enjoying each and every moment!

  10. Wonderfully expressed, Ruth.
    I think your ruminations on mortality are entirely to be expected.
    "In life and in death, we belong to God."
    It is good to be reminded of that.
    Here's to health and wholeness for your mother.

  11. I really liked your post-especially the last two paragraphs.I can relate to those thoughts.I saw a reality show on television the other day that featured a Mennonite family and I thought about some of the posts that you did in the past which introduced me to the mennonites for the first time.


Note: only a member of this blog may post a comment.