Portland, Maine - March 4
Daughter Katherine was pushing granddaughter Hazel in a stroller from downtown Portland to our condo about a mile away. I was strolling beside them, admiring the turn of the century (20th) architecture while bemoaning the fact that no one builds houses like this anymore.
"Check out that house over there," Katherine said pointing to a stylish tiny house across the street. A house for books, not people. A Free Little Library!
"I love those!" I exclaimed.
Katherine, who gets more excited (if possible) about books than I do, was two steps ahead of me as she maneuvered the stroller down one curb and over the next.
She opened the tiny door, and we took turns rummaging through the collection. Towards the back, she found a set of Geronimo Stilton books that she thought Hazel's brother, Robert, might like.
"Pretty cool the way someone built this house to resemble the original," Katherine noted as she stuffed the books in her bag.
"What original?" I asked, turning my head in a clueless sort of way.
"The one behind you."
"A-ha!" Moment #1 - It pays to step back... and look at the BIG picture.
Kotor, Montenegro - March 10
I left Portland the next day to fly to Montenegro, where Drew is continuing his interim year as Head of School at Knightsbridge School International in Tivat (Read more on 10/4/17 blog posting.)
We spent the weekend in the nearby town of Kotor, showing his brother Dwight and wife Simone the sights. Kotor is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, parts of its Old Town dating back to the 12th century. Many of the buildings look every bit their age, but one in particular interested me.
Unlike its restored neighbors which house restaurants, shops and hotels, its fragmented facade is overrun with vines, plants, trees and pigeons.
From the vantage point of our hotel window, I could focus on the building's details, especially the pigeons' comings and goings. While most of the population flitted between windows and roof (what remains of it), one pigeon stayed put. He/she stayed in his/her. . . pigeon hole.
"So that's where that expression came from!" I announced to anyone who would listen.
Of course, I wanted to interview that pigeon, ask the obvious questions:
Why are you pigeonholed? How do you feel about being pigeonholed? Do you stay there because you want to or because others have pigeonholed you? But, unfortunately, there was no pigeon translator available.
"A-Ha!" Moment #2 - It's equally valuable to step closer... and look at the details.
No matter what the location or situation, life keeps reminding me to pay attention.
(Find more about "Paying Attention" Part 1 and Part 2 on previous postings.)