I just returned from a family vacation with my parents and brother, celebrating the 30 years my Mom and Dad have been married. They officially celebrated their 30th anniversary in August. We visited London and Paris with day trips escaping both cities, enjoying the rural landscapes, and seeing a broader scope of the country outside the bustling city walls.
One such day trip took us to the English county of Wiltshire. My Dad insisted on seeing Stonehenge. As intriguing as the famous site is with the mystery it entails, the two of us had already seen it 2003, when my college roommate and I tagged along with him on a business trip to England. We participated in the same 12 hr. day trip back then. It took 12 hours of driving in circles to get to Stonehenge and back in 2003, and it took 12 hours of driving this time around (with the city of Bathe in between, which is where I’d now like to retire). So, while most of the Brits I’ve asked have never been to Stonehenge, I’ve spent a whopping 24 hours on the site. An entire day of my life was spent on a landmark that’s famous for having little explanation and killer solstice festivals.
“We are visiting a giant question mark,” – my half complaint. “It looks like Giants were playing dominos, and that’s what we’re left with. And it’s somehow connected to Venus.”
“But we are getting INSIDE the circle this time,” my dad explained, like a kid filled with the excitement of Christmas morning.
Let me just explain.
The “fence” that keeps visitors outside the inner circle is a rope that’s strung together on sticks, THAT COMES UP TO MY SHINS (maybe ankles). I’ve seen more challenging hurdles in my day. I could literally skip into the inner circle if it weren’t for the security guards.
Alas, we arrived at sunset. It was beautiful. We were in the middle of nowhere and since we were there after hours, there were only about 15 of us. Let’s be honest, who the hell else is traveling 12 hours from London to drive in circles to visit a giant stone circle? It’s a cyclical cycle of torment and car sickness. I JOKE, I joke.
Standing in the middle of nowhere, in the middle of an inexplicable stone configuration, was a marvelous experience. Miles away from everything, within a literal mystery, enjoying a breathtaking sunset, I was reminded how small we all are. Life is a wondrous mystery with or without giant stones as a reminder. BUT, it was nice having one. Breathtaking moments are around every corner when we’re open to the divine mystery within all.
The “fences” we perceive, may momentarily keep us from enjoying the wondrous mystery, until we realize the mysterious supreme is omnipresent . Inside or outside the “circle,” we’re all within the same giant circle. With time, the fences become mere rope boundaries that can simply be walked over given the right timing and circumstances, or perhaps, perseverance.