Tucked away in our subconsciousness is an idyllic vision.
We see ourselves on a long trip that spans the continent.
We are traveling by train.
Out the windows, we drink in the passing scene of cars on nearby highways,
of children waving at a crossing,
of cattle grazing on a distant hillside,
of smoke pouring from a power plant,
of row upon row of corn and wheat,
of flatlands and valleys,
of mountains and rolling hills,
of city skylines and village halls.
But uppermost in our minds is the final destination.
On a certain day at a certain hour,
we will pull into the station.
Bands will be playing and flags waving.
Once we get there,
so many wonderful dreams will come true
and the pieces of our lives will fit together like a completed jigsaw puzzle.
How restlessly we pace the aisles,
damning the minutes for loitering
— waiting,waiting, waiting for the station.
“When we reach the station,
that will be it!” we cry. “When I’m 18.”
“When I buy a new 450SL Mercedes Benz.”
“When I put the last kid through college.”
“When I have paid off the mortgage.”
“When I get a promotion.”
“When I reach the age of retirement,
I shall live happily ever after!”
So stop pacing the aisles and counting the miles.
Instead, climb more mountains,
eat more icecream, go barefoot more often,
swim more rivers,
watch more sunset, laugh more and cry less.
Life must be lived as we go along.
Then the station will come soon enough.