A year ago today I arrived in San Francisco, CA – jet lagged and wide eyed. They took our fingerprints at the airport and said “Welcome to America, enjoy your stay.” There was a fire warning on, so we didn’t get to see any fireworks, and we were too tired to think, but it was still very much Fourth of July.
The three months in California changed our thinking about a lot of things; mainly, our respect for Americans (and to some extent America in general) grew tremendously. We started talking about coming back before we had even left. About the friendly and open attitude, and how that was something to strive for when we got back home. Our surprise that things actually worked … basically, that the US wasn’t the glorified third world country many Europeans make it out to be. (And all this was reinforced when we visited Boston for three months half a year later.)
It also marked the beginning of my grail quest. The name was largely a jest, but you probably get the picture: searching for some spritual treasure, hidden within. That whole journey has made an impact – some of it is spiritual, some of it philosphical, politcal, related to family and work etc. – but it all boils down to: what do I want from my life, and how do I achieve it. Freemasonry is one of the tools to get there.
To me, this day will be an annual reminder of the amazing journey that we had, and how fortunate we are. Happy Fourth of July, everyone.