The End of the World, and other myths

Snow threatens, or so they say.

16 inches already down in Botetourt, Virginia, which was home for thirty years before I moved to Vermont. My daughter writes from college that they have ceased to function in fear of snow. Last night, I went by the grocery store, forgetting the end of the world as we know it was about to happen, and when I saw the mobs, I turned around and left.

There’s nothing I need that badly.

Most of my clients are in the Mid Atlantic area, and frankly, they don’t want to talk to me today. They are likely at work. Television never stops, not even for the end of the world.

Even here in Vermont, the long time locals, who generally look on snow as a minor inconvenience, if they deign to notice it at all, are stocking up for the weather.

Me? I am making chili. I am at my favorite coffee shop, working on my laptop, sipping caffeine and chatting with the cook and single waitress, who are the only ones here.

One of the few things I like about getting older is that the end of the world seems less important than it once did. I’ve lost jobs. I’ve been through a divorce. I’ve lost loved ones. I’ve seen my bank balance in single digits a time or two. My spirit has been shattered. I’ve nearly died twice. I’ve been through three “floods of the century.”

And somehow, not always in ways that make sense to me, I’ve come out on the other side. I’ve found new jobs. I’ve found new love. I have rediscovered my spirit. Health and joy find me again and again.

At 58, I no longer believe in the end of the world.

Don’t get me wrong. I believe in endings. In change. And in the pain that sometimes comes with that change. I believe in grief and mourning. In deep, deep loss. Oh yes, I believe in all those things because they have become part of the fabric of my life, part of my story and journey.

But the end of the world? No. Life is instead a series of new beginnings. Change. Growth. Evolution. A crooked path that would do Charles DIckens proud. Leaving me with a story worth telling, and the ability to sit on the front porch and watch the end of the world fall, one flake at a time, sipping a cup of Russian tea…… and wondering what’s next.

Be Well. Travel Wisely,

Tom

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