The Journey

25 Dec

Eighteen minutes until Christmas in Hawaii and eighteen minutes until it’s over in New Zealand. A day apart yet separated by only an hour in the real world. All part of the long now on our journey.

The path can seem lonely at times and yet solitude is one of the great joys in my life. While on Stewart Island at the southern end of New Zealand I sat on a bench along the trail not far from the site of the picture below and listened for a long time to birdsong echoing through the rain forest canopy. I walked empty beaches and thought about the great gyre of life. Cormorant skeletons and millions of shells and a leopard seal skull gave mute testimony to the ephemeral nature of existence.

Doors open. Doors close. Life changes form.

I’m grateful for the fellowship and support of everyone reading this.  It is lovely walking with you.


Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays or, if you prefer, Serenity.

Mahalo nui loa.



The Journey


19 Responses to “The Journey”

  1. rochellewisoff December 25, 2013 at 10:20 am #

    Dear Doug,

    It’s four hours and eighteen minutes into Christmas in the Missouri. Thank you for allowing me to be among those who share your journey. Your gentle words are testimony to the poetic soul within you.

    Merry Christmas,

    Kia Ora

    Shalom Chaver Y’kar,


    • dmmacilroy December 25, 2013 at 7:43 pm #

      Dear Rochelle,

      Thanks for walking with me all the early mornings. With luck and a light heart, I think we’ve many miles to go. Looking forward to it.



  2. Sandra December 25, 2013 at 11:03 am #

    I wish you a serene Christmas holiday, Doug (hedging my bets there.) It’s been a pleasure to walk with you from time to time. Felices fiestas!

    • dmmacilroy December 25, 2013 at 7:34 pm #

      Dear Sandra,

      Thank you very much. No need to hedge your bets. I love Christmas, even though the underpinnings of the holiday are shrouded in the cloak of time. I think every day should be Christmas.

      I’m glad you’re with me now and again. Love your company.



  3. Indira December 25, 2013 at 12:59 pm #

    Hi, I think when one starts enjoying solitude then life becomes a real pleasure. Wish you Merry Christmas and Happy peaceful Holidays .

    • dmmacilroy December 25, 2013 at 7:35 pm #

      Dear Indira,

      We think alike and it is a pleasure. Thank you for your wishes. I’m sure they’re going to come true.




  4. bridgesareforburning December 25, 2013 at 4:25 pm #

    Hi Doug, Thanks for sharing this. In your photo, New Zealand reminds me of Oregon. I was thinking similar thoughts about the fleeting nature of our existence, and how not only do we share this journey for only a while, but also that before long, relatively, we will be as forgotten as the owner of that seal skull. So I’m with you, let’s enjoy this miracle of awareness and keep our eyes open for the adventure all around us. May your new year be filled with fascination. Ron

    On Wed, Dec 25, 2013 at 4:14 AM, ironwoodwind

    • dmmacilroy December 25, 2013 at 7:39 pm #

      Dear Ron,

      You are wise, my friend. I return your wishes a hundredfold.

      Thank you, thank you and thank you, fellow traveler.



    • sandra crook December 25, 2013 at 7:43 pm #

      Ron, you mirrored exactly the same thought I had today. We’ve been revisiting the past here in Spain. Doug has captured the essence of the season in his post.

  5. pattisj December 25, 2013 at 10:19 pm #

    Merry Christmas, Doug. Interesting facts about the distance and time zone differences.

    • dmmacilroy December 27, 2013 at 9:54 am #

      Dear Patti,

      Merry Christmas to you, too. Thanks for visiting.



  6. tedstrutz December 26, 2013 at 12:10 am #

    Merry Christmas, Doug.

    • dmmacilroy December 27, 2013 at 9:55 am #

      Thank you, Ted. Same to you. Loved your playstation gift success picture. Well done.



  7. elmowrites December 26, 2013 at 3:46 am #

    Christmas is almost over here, Doug, but I hope you are still in the throes of enjoying yours. You words are peaceful as ever, and if there is one thing we could all do with a bit more of, it’s serenity. I once wrote that my ambition was to have some love me enough to accompany me to Ayers Rock (Uluru as we’d call it now) and understand me enough to let me be alone when we got there. Your words on solitude echo that sentiment, I think.
    It’s a pleasure to share some pieces of the long now with you

    Happy Christmas!

    • dmmacilroy December 27, 2013 at 9:58 am #

      Dear Jennifer,

      I’d fit the bill re your trip to Uluru. If you need a silent companion for that trip, I’m your man. Thanks for dropping in to read and say nice things. Happy Christmas to you, too.



  8. K.D. McCrite December 26, 2013 at 3:01 pm #

    Lovely photo and an even lovelier post. Thank you for sharing both, Doug, my friend.

    • dmmacilroy December 27, 2013 at 10:04 am #

      Dearest Kady,

      How wonderful to see your words grace this page. Thanks for visiting. Wishing you Serenity.



  9. sandraconner December 27, 2013 at 4:59 am #

    Hi, Doug. Well, as usual, I’m reading this too late to reply in a timely fashion — in other words to wish you a Merry Christmas. However, I can wish you one for next year and be the very first to do so. I think I’ll take that avenue.

    Your piece added another link to the chain of thoughts that the Lord has been weaving together inside me for the past week or so. I’ve had a tendency for the past couple of years to focus on either the past (whether good or bad) or the future (and all of its possible problems or successes). In the midst of that tendency, I have often found myself missing out on the present — and all of the wonderful experiences, feelings, and changes that could have been taking place if I had really and truly BEEN THERE when I was there.

    Suddenly, one day a week or so ago, I sort of woke up and realized that — for that particular day — I had totally separated myself from the past or future and just lived right there in the present moment. I was astounded at the peace and joy I experienced doing that — and then even more so when I realized that I HAD done it. It caused me to renew my efforts to make it a point to BE where I am and experience NOW fully.

    As I read this piece I felt it was almost a confirmation of that lesson.

  10. Helena Hann-Basquiat December 27, 2013 at 1:33 pm #

    Hi Doug — I’ve missed you, and am so happy to hear from you via this post! Merry Christmas — I hope you had a wonderful time, enjoying the serenity that is found in wandering.

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