“I’ll know it when I see it,” is a phrase I’ve used many times. Sometimes things only become clear to me when I can see them with my own eyes. Have you ever wondered if what you see is actually what is real, or the truth?
I recently returned from a road trip out west.
I am always taken by the beauty of so many parts of this country. Even though I’ve traveled to several other countries, as well, I am still quite mesmerized by the diverse scenery, geography, and topography of this great land we call home. I wonder how many of us take the time to truly see, to fully grasp the natural beauty that surrounds us, from sea to shining sea.
Starting out near Indianapolis on a Monday, I drove through Indiana, Illinois, Iowa, Nebraska, into Wyoming and down to Salt Lake City, arriving there on Wednesday. While in Salt Lake City, I spent a few days visiting my son, which was great except for a flat tire in Orem. We had fun exploring the mountains around Salt Lake and just spending time together.
After my time with him and his having to get back to work, I drove down to Sedona and spent a few days there. I hiked Boynton Canyon, one of the vortex sites of Sedona.
I took a helicopter ride around the Red Rock canyons of that area. I love flying in helicopters, and I’ve taken rides many times including in the Rocky Mountains and along the Pacific Coast. I marveled at the sheer beauty of the rock formations, the contrasting colors from mountains to desert and canyons, and I thought about what it was like for the people who lived and explored those areas long ago. Was I seeing what they saw? Could I even imagine what life was like for them?
Due to some schedule changes, I took the opportunity to drive down to Phoenix and see an old friend and meet his wife. We had a nice lunch at one of their favorite spots, and he and I bored her with stories of our youth. I then drove back up to Flagstaff for the night. The next morning, I headed east for my trip home, through New Mexico, Texas, Oklahoma, Missouri, Illinois, and back home again in Indiana.
During my travels, with all the changes of scenery, I was reminded of something that touches me every time. We may never truly know what it was like for those who lived there long ago. For them, it may well have been their world and all they knew. I can imagine, however, that the beauty and majesty of the land that was home to them, was held in the highest regard. It represented life. The land held the power of life, of food and clothing and shelter, and it was to be revered and honored. As I flew around the canyons and walked the paths in Boynton, I allowed myself the time to absorb all that was around me. I allowed myself to truly see, for my eyes to soak in the beauty that was there.
As my travels took me through different terrain and changing colors, my eyes saw the unique beauty in each and every place. It was in those moments of contrast, of dramatic changes in scenery, that I realized how spectacular this land is. The only way to truly understand, “America the Beautiful,” is to drive across this land and allow your eyes to truly see. Seeing is believing.
How cool is that?