Friday, September 15, 2006

9/15/06 (Day 3): We've arrived in Peru!!!

Return... by Benjamin.

"I feel I am returning to something I was in Peru before. Hard Return., I am a few years older, coming less for personal travel and more for long-term adventure. Or at least two years feels long-term now. Somehow time is compressed in these familiar travel spaces; airports and planes. Now, perhaps, I am returning to my post as country director. I am excited, not as a twenty-seven year old becomes over the prospect of heavy lifting and intellectual challenge, but as a man seeking the comfort of old friends, customs and thrill of watching my children grow.

Yet now, in this tunnel of timeless air where ages have more in common, I recognize the steadfast exhiliration of Latin America. The language. The prospect of change and tradition congenially wrestling; the plazas and fountains; and of course the mountains.

Consistantly, at all ages, the mountains overwhelm my senses. They will always be a role model, a home. Stalwart, but forever, eroding, diminishing back into the sea. Nurturing, home to creatures, plant and soil and bacteria. Yet, exercising power, steep slopes and impassable terrain. Humble and humbling, valleys offer respite to the unrelenting altitude. I return to something elemental, something soulful, full of my history, the history of people, the history of all being, the story of the Earth. The spirit of everything can be found int he mountains. I am more than glad to come back home."