Moments and Memories

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I sat on the swing overlooking the mountains….Listening to the sounds of the evening, taking sips of my drink and listening to the one seated next to me…I felt the this place once again. In that space, over dinner, laughter, conversation, sharing lives and stories… is moments like that that make up memories……

My mother has a favorite saying – “Robert, you drink in life in giant gulps”. I always smile when I think about her saying it. IMG_4328Once I finally understood and became aware of how I was taking life in big gulps I refocused myself on all of the smaller…seemingly insignificant happenings that go on around me every day. The way the hummingbird lit on the feeder that evening, the way your gaze met mine as the conversation went deeper, the feel of the breeze as it brushed across my cheek on the porch, the way the dogs nuzzled up for a pat so they wouldn’t be left out. Those are seemingly the moments of everyday life and yet, sometimes I take it all for granted, but when I’m able to focus on them, to slow down and pause, those magical moments are created.

I was blessed to have one of them this week. These are the times that help sustain us. They are the memories that carry us forward for years and years. In particular I find these moments are the ones that I never want to end. It’s like reading a great book or seeing a fabulous movie. When I turn the last page or the screen goes dark and find myself saying, “wait, that can’t be it, it can’t be IMG_4133over!” It’s those times that I find myself wanting to know more….that is where memories are created, the places and times that we never want to forget. I was reminded that intimacy is never purely physical. It’s about the connection on deeper levels, a looking and caressing of each others soul…it’s about trust, truth and life. Theses are the seconds, minutes, hours or days where we are surrounded by the “magic” It can be a place, a person(s) or both where and when they happen, but oh when they do…..well…that carries us forever….

I once read that there was a difference between moments and memories and the illustration used went something like this…While we ate dinner on September 1, 2004, we actually don’t know what we had – this is a moment, we know ate, we just can’t recall what. When we can specifically recall an “event” in our mind and recreate it exactly….like a wedding…that is a memory…those are what creates the times that we won’t forget. As my father has gotten older and more forgetful his memories have become more pronounced and more powerful for him, but after that night this week in a conversation we had on the phone he reminded me “The best portion of life is in those small nameless moments you spend smiling with something or someone that matters to you”…to be honest I think it’s true for all of us. It’s when time stands still in those moments that look suspiciously like ordinary life to others that our memories are created.

When the night came to an end I found myself wanting more. I wandered out the front door, 2015-04-20 21-30-37 -0400down the drive and then up to the house, the dogs trailing behind. I stood outside, gazed at the stars and watched as the full moon drifted across the night sky. Fully intending to go to bed, I sat on my porch instead, lit the fire and gave thanks. For the day. For the night. For the moment. For the connection. For the depth. For the openness. For giving. Like all of us, I have no idea what the future holds, but I am really looking forward to it. And of this I’m sure, we’ll create more memories and certainly have more moments, but that night…oh….that night, I created a memory that will be in my mind for a long, long time…….

                                     Thank you.

Robert Rankin

                                                                  Innkeeper, Explorer & Adventurer 

Published by robertrankinsnowbirdmountainlodge

As Innkeeper & Steward of Snowbird Mountain Lodge, Robert Rankin lives at an elevation of 3,000 feet in scenic Robbinsville, North Carolina. Operating this historic retreat in the western part of the state, he strives to ensure that guests feel at home and are well acclimated to their surroundings. Intimately familiar with the area, Mr. Rankin has owned the 100-acre resort for the past 21 years and guides visitors personally to aptly named landmarks such as Sunset Deck and Sunrise Point. Snowbird Mountain Lodge offers guests a diversity of comfortable lodging options in cottages and houses. At the center of the Robbinsville, North Carolina, property is the chestnut-hewn Main Lodge, which offers dramatic views over valleys below and crystalline Lake Santeetlah. Guests are encouraged to make use of a full “outdoor fleet” of kayaks, canoes, mountain bikes, paddleboards, and fly rods. Guided season-specific adventures await, including wildflower walks and birding and fly-fishing excursions. Lucky beyond belief this is the celebration of a life well lived! Robert is an Adventurer, Innkeeper, Captain & Pirate, Hooligan and a Dreamer!

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