When I return from Istanbul

This weekend, in my heart, I will be staying in a tastefully appointed (ridiculously luxurious) flat located over a designer boutique in a gorgeous district of Istanbul.

I will run along the waterfront, soak in marble baths, wander palace grounds, marvel at the rich history of the city, eat and drink things the pleasure of which cannot be described in words alone. Perhaps dance might express it. Perhaps.

I will stand in Mimar Sinan’s buildings from the Ottoman era. I will sleep in a city that spans two continents. I will be thankful for the libraries of this city that saved so many Greek and Latin manuscripts that would have otherwise been victim to mass-destruction in western Europe and north Africa. I will explore the spice bazaar and Hagia Sophia and mosques and the last stop on the silk road (the Grand Bazaar).

And when I return home, with a new wardrobe (which may or may not include a few new pairs of shoes), a rested and rejuvenated soul, an inspired heart, and a new vocabulary word or two…

I will continue to be amazed by the beauty of the land I call home, the way the light touches the curves of the hills differently each evening, the cloudscapes, the fields and vineyards.

I will appreciate being greeted by name when I walk into a shop, bank, restaurant or bar.

I will not take for granted the personal shoppers who help me explore a wide variety of fashion statements in a single afternoon. I will enjoy a perfect americano made exactly the way I like it, delicious cuisine only a short walk from my front door, and a seemingly endless supply of incredible wine. I will enjoy the local produce available throughout the year from farmers who care about the land and the people.

I will enjoy the beautiful drives from my home to the city, along the Columbia Gorge or over the Cascade Mountains. The way the land changes as I head toward the ocean. I will enjoy the changing seasons, the wind, the colors, the cold and grey of winter knowing a bright hot summer will come again. I will hike and bike and ski and camp and look down from the hills on this special valley.

When I return, I will look you in the eye, and smile, and say thank you for being a part of my life.

And all it took was a daydream. A daydream about a weekend trip away.

If you’re interested in more about mind-wandering, daydreams, and the science of how it improves our lives, check out this article from Maria Popova on Brain Pickings.

What do you do to refresh? What nourishes you? What offers you space to feel grateful for adventures and everyday blessings?

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