For over a decade, my favorite place on the planet has been a moment at the top of a turret of a small castle in Germany. From the top of that turret, I was able to look down the side of a mountain overlooking a tiny little town at the bottom. The town was built surrounding a beautiful, regal church… with its glorious steeple standing tall and proud in the center. It was pristine and white with a red roof, and you could hear the sound of the bells in the tower tolling amazingly clear all the way up the mountain. It was absolutely peaceful – a light breeze up there at the top of the turret, with the gentle sound of bells floating in the wind… it’s a moment that I always carry with me.
I’ve found a place that competes as a favorite… for all of the opposite reasons. The tumultuous waves crashing violently into the rocks, and then being sucked out… the only thing gentle is the spray of water as it drifts around me after the initial powerful impact against the bottom of the cliff. It’s almost overwhelming … as though I’m right on the edge of the planet. Standing near the edge of this cliff, closing my eyes and listening to the sound of the waves… it can easily be mistaken for something peaceful. Being here and experiencing this feeling of rest, while knowing there’s such an incredible amount of force in every wave that drives into the rocks, is absolutely amazing. Looking at the cliffs and knowing that the sheer power of those waves has carved out and smoothed all of these crevices, and understanding how many centuries of unrestrained savagery it must have taken to achieve the condition that it’s currently in… It is truly magnificent.
I ponder over the idea that two such incongruous moments can both provoke such an intense feeling of belonging within myself… I think it tells me more about myself than I’ve thought of previously… the ideology of remaining calm and finding peace even when being surrounded with or confronted by chaos. I find it thrilling to jump into the middle of the fray and cause things to settle around me – as though I’m a commanding enough force to incite tranquility with my intervention.
When one of our customers suggests that there’s a problem, I enjoy the thrill of diving through my knowledge and finding an answer that will smooth things out for them. When I’m involved in a play, and the director has a need, it’s completely gratifying to be able to supply them with whatever it is they’ve asked for. Raising 5 teenagers and being able to keep the peace among them. Working as a midwife’s assistant in previous years… Perhaps it’s simply a mediator inside of me, and not a gladiator… but I’m willing to bet that in either case, the satisfaction of resolution is just as viable to both personalities.