It was great to meet up with my buddy Jeff today at our usual café, Wes Mans, in White Georgia. We hadn’t seen each other since our cross country trip. I cranked Big Red up and took off down Highway 411. It was great to get on the bike and head out. The winds, the scents, the sounds, the dangers all help bring me into the present, the here and now. I needed this ride. It had been a rough few weeks. When I got out on the open highway I thanked the good Lord for this day, for this ride, and confessed all my trials and trespasses of the past week.
It got me thinking about the Lord’s Prayer and the bit about forgiving us as we forgive others. Depending on your interpretation we’re praying for forgiveness of debts or trespasses. Forgiveness for debts is pretty easy to understand; though it’s amazing how many of us can utter this while we pursue our debtors! Trespasses is harder but more fruitful to explore. Essentially, it’s our sins; the times we trespassed, trampled without sacred reverence, even if only inadvertently, on the holy lives of friends and lovers.
So I got all of this out, asked for forgiveness and traveling mercies and found absolution in the wistful but healing winds and through the winsome, winding roads. Roads are always in the present, always welcoming, offer new hopes and bear no grudges.
Jeff showed up in his ominous looking police interceptor. We both had country fried steak and stories to tell. We reminisced about the ride, about Yosemite, Death Valley, and the Pacific Coast Highway, places that felt magical and those that were frightening. Jeff wants to take another trip; this time up to the Blue Ridge Parkway. Spend a couple of days cruising around the Great Smoky Mountains, Cherokee and Shenandoah.
Just the sounds and intimations of the place names made me want to leave right then and there.
We made plans to look at dates and locations and get back to each other. It was a great lunch; the steak wasn’t healthy but the conversation was healing, holy.
Then I rode home, driving on unfamiliar roads, purposely getting lost and found, the way life is.