C’est fini! and then it begins again!

Today is my last full day in Sancerre with one class left to attend and only 24 more hours to experience life in this very old tranquil village. Tomorrow I head back to Paris where it is beautiful but I would not call it tranquil, but I do love the bustle of a big city.

This morning there is a fog sitting on the grape vines below the city center of Sancerre. This morning fog that feels all to familiar to me. For me it is a fog of unknowing of what tomorrow will bring. Like the grape vines below beginning to think of the process of the spring’s renewal and what the earth will give in exchange for a delightful bouquet that can be found in a bunch of wonderfully sun-drenched grapes. Can those vines feel the excitement in the air of that cloud that hides from us what is going on? Each year those vines have to begin again.

Maybe last year was not so great for growing and when the fog settled before the spring it said to the vines, ‘I am sorry this year will be tough. The yield will be less and your taste will carry the struggle you will go through in order to survive the harsh summer to come’. Maybe as the fog caresses the vines this morning it is whispering hope, “hold tight, just a few more cold days and then I will release the warmth of the sun and bring enough rain to sustain you , this year will be a good crop and all of you will survive and thrive.’

It has to be a mystery to the vines as well as us as to why some years are good for growing and other years are good for dying. Yet I believe the vines walk towards their destiny with their hearts fill of hope and knowing that as one vines dies because it could not survive the harsh conditions the one next to it says, ‘I will tell my brothers of your struggle and thorough your fight others will gain wisdom.’

Some of these vines sit on the side of a mountain that is very steep and their lives are much harder than the vines sitting down below in the valley where the rain can sit and drench their ground. Those on the steep incline must take from the rain as it goes by, flowing unstopped down the side of that hill. It is a difficult life for those vines yet they are the ones that produce such an exquisite taste, a taste developed by their struggle and gain. The vines at the foot of the hill have a good taste but their taste is shallow lacking in experience.

Just as in life there are those who would fight to climb the mountain of unknowing first. They push to survive under difficult situations seeking the summit, a climb that would destroy weaker beings. They move forward and struggle to show the fight is always worth it so one can feel the sun as it brightens our days. They know that we fight not for ourselves only but for those who are weaker trying to walk behind us. I seek to be as those vines, I desire to be one of the vines at the top whispering to my brothers and sisters below me that it is ok, there is nothing to fear, keep climbing.

In the sky past the layer of fog are the hints that maybe the sun will shine today after many days of grey, grey skies. The sun that brings life back to an area heavily drenched in fog, a hopeful sign of good days to come. That same sun is doing that job everyday to those on our earth drenched in the fog of forgetting about the climb that is the journey we take in life. Life is climb, a journey up, not across. Unless you seek not to find the summit but are complacent in the mediocrity of an unexplored life, the life of your soul.

There is only growth when we step away from that which we know and that which we would hide behind in order not to grow. When we choose life we choose to step out in front of those who are afraid and cannot. Way-showers, those who move even when the fear is great, pushed on by the yearning for the feel of the sun on their face. The fog has settled around my heart and the sun’s rays are just at the horizon. I hear it! The fog is whispering my name saying sweetly, ‘keep going Leanne we are not done with you yet.’

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