"When your intention is clear, so is the way." – Alan Cohen
A few weeks ago, I was driving from Brooklyn, New York to my home in Massachusetts. The trip normally takes around 3 ½ to 4 hours. I was starting at 2:00pm, well before rush hour. There was snow in the forecast, so I planned on a 5-hour trip, getting home around 7:00pm.
The snow started before I left the parking lot. The highway was already backed up, and my GPS recommended that I go through Manhattan. I was familiar with the route along the Hudson River, and while it may add a few miles, it probably would be quicker.
And it was. For about 30 minutes. Then everything stopped.
Warning: The following article on teams contains no sports references, analogies or metaphors.
For me, team victories have always been more enjoyable than individual victories. It may be the feeling of camaraderie, or the process of coming together to triumph over a challenge. Or, it may be the understanding that we accomplish very little on our own, and that we all rely on others for our success.
“There is no joy in possession without sharing.” – Erasmus
There’s so much work to be done.
We’re fortunate to live in a time with so much freedom and prosperity. Medical science has developed surgical techniques and drugs that can cure injuries and diseases that meant certain death just a generation ago. Most of us can access information on any topic at any time from almost anywhere. Technology has developed to the point where the “6 degrees of separation” has been reduced to only 4.
"Those who wish to sing, always find a song." – Swedish Proverb
Back in 2007, my wife and I spent a week in Paris for our 20th anniversary. It was everything we expected. It was wonderful.
Before the trip, we conducted a lot of research. We visited our local library and bookstores to get travel guides and map books. Some books were more formal, like Frommer’s Guide, while others were not so formal, like The Irreverent Guide to Paris. We downloaded articles from the internet and reached out to friends and family. We had a lot of information.
With so many sources, some of the advice was contradictory. One person would talk about how helpful people were, while someone else would grouse about snobby Parisians. Americans were beloved. Americans were hated. Speak French if you can. Don’t even bother trying to speak French. What were we to expect?
“You cannot do a kindness too soon, for you never know how soon it will be too late.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson
The flight was packed. The already small seats felt even smaller. The overhead bins were jammed to maximum capacity. But we pulled away from the jetway on time.
Then came the announcement. Due to weather, all flights have been delayed at least 45 minutes. The pilot was going to move the plane close to the runway, so we could take off as soon as a slot opened up. An hour later, we left Logan Airport.
Air traffic control wasn’t overreacting about the weather. It was one of the bumpiest flights in years.
This little lesson occurred 10 years ago, in 2008. I share it today to honor my father, Bill and my friend, Tim. Saturday, October 27, 2018, would have been my father’s 94th birthday, and next month represents the one-year anniversary of Tim’s passing. I think of them often.
Recently, my father was telling a story about his boyhood. He and his brother had walked 5 miles to the next town to listen to the radio broadcast of President Roosevelt’s inaugural address. That’s Franklin Roosevelt, not Theodore Roosevelt (my father’s not that old).
“Consider the postage stamp: its usefulness consists in the ability to stick to one thing till it gets there.” – Josh Billings
One day in 1981, a friend of mine asked me to cover for her for a few days at her part-time job. Little did I know that that favor would be the beginning of a life-long love affair……………………………with mail.
“Sometimes I've believed as many as six impossible things before breakfast.” – Lewis Carroll
This month began with some exciting news – the Voyager 2 spacecraft reported an uptick in the number and type of cosmic rays it was encountering!
Okay, maybe that’s not exciting news to everyone. But for anyone who’s interested in space exploration, the announcement from NASA points to an imminent milestone. In the coming months, the spacecraft will be the second man-made object to leave the solar system. We will have another messenger among the stars.
“The people who make a difference are not the ones with the credentials, but the ones with the concern.” – Max Lucado
This time of year always brings a lot of travel. Many companies want to finish projects before the year-end, so that means more onsite visits. In support of Postal Customer Councils, I’ll visit 6 states in 3 months, delivering keynote addresses and instructional classes. Between Labor Day and Thanksgiving, I’ll be flying at least 10 out of 12 weeks.
“What’s in a name? That which we call a rose
By any other name would smell as sweet.”
I’ve always loved roses. I remember the first rose bush that I grew in my mother’s flower bed. I decided to start with a bare root, which was a greater challenge than I anticipated. After several months, green sprouts. Then leaves. Buds. And finally, one beautiful rose.
Years later, when I finally had my own house, another chance. With the lessons of the past, the soil was better prepared. A consistent watering schedule was followed. Within a few months, not just a single rose, but a thriving plant with multiple blooms.