Springbank swamp

Easter mass under the 800 year old oak treeLast night I returned to Guelph. I drove down to South Carolina on April 2 (arriving April 3) and I led an ecology Easter Triduum retreat at Springbank Retreat Center for Eco-Spirituality and the Arts. I was there Easter of 2011 as well. It was great to return. It was a wonderful to experience the gradual expression of spring as I drove south. At the retreat, I gave a talk each day and presided at the various services. The Center is located on an old plantation, and has beautiful grounds which includes a swamp, an 800 year old oak tree (and many other large trees not quite as old!), and a cemetery of African-Americans most of whom were slaves. It also tries to integrate Catholic  spirituality with Aboriginal spirituality. It was a great occasion to bring all this together with the life to death to resurrection theme of the weekend.

I played tourist for most of this week. On Monday I went to see Charlestown (SC), a city with much history and beauty. I also went to a beach that was close by and put my legs in the Atlantic Ocean – a very welcomed homecoming! Tuesday I drove to Washington, and went out to supper with a friend on sabbatical there on. Wednesday, I saw many of the sites in Washington. Thursday, I drove to Baltimore and visited with friends. Yesterday, I returned to Guelph through Pennsylvania and New York state.

I am pleasantly surprised that my energy level was good for most of the trip. I am scheduled to begin more radiation for the two lesions on my arm. However, while I was away they have healed quite well. I will see the doctor on Tuesday, and we will make the decision as to whether radiation is needed or not. I still have two other lesions that are slowly healing and in need of bandaging. These are the two that have been with me for a long time. There is progress though.

Being away, visiting with friends and seeing new sites, was rejuvenating. This week, my mother and sister (Mary) will be visiting. Of course, I am looking forward to the visit. I am also aching to begin doing some garden work. We have had more seasonal weather while I was away, so the onset of spring has slowed somewhat.