About a month prior to our Italy trip, I was at the Arboretum in Chaska, MN at my women’s leadership retreat. To start the day, the amazing leader let each of us pick a card from the pile of Zen Cards. I don’t remember what we had to report back to the group but my card clearly resonated with me much longer and much deeper than the safety of that circle time. My card read the following: “Experience all things with the enthusiasm of a child, as if you were seeing it for the FIRST time. This is the Zen Mind, always new, always aware, always that of a beginner.”
I kept this saying in the back of my mind as we boarded our international flight, as we went through customs, as we made the trip through the seaside towns and then lived it as we enjoyed our visit with family and friends in Italy. In Positano, our daily routine changed slightly because of traveling with Vincenzo (Vin-Chen-zo), as it gave us the opportunity to live the Zen Mind and to experience Edy’s home in a new way. We took the road more than the steps and said hello to the town folk. We stopped for our favorite pastries at La Zagara when normally our focus would’ve been getting to the beach. We stopped to touch and feel things, and literally smell the flowers as we walked by the jasmine. Just because our child may have dictated the route, the route was clearly more amazing than what my scheduled, focused, step-by-step itinerary minded thought process would have been. My child let me enjoy the sea, my favorite aperitivo cocktail, the best truffle risotto (Thank you da Vincenzo) and Edy’s wonderful family more than I could’ve imagined! I fell in love with his family in a way that I may not have if Enzo didn’t remind me of living the Zen Mind by experiencing things with the enthusiasm of a child.