Kili Karuna: The Stories are in the Telling

Jambo to All and Happy Birthday to my Niece Rayne,

A story saves a life a little
at a time by making us
see and hear and taste our lives
and dreams more deeply.
A story does not rescue life
at the end heroically,
but all along the road continually.
I do not make the story,
the story makes me.

(Witherell and Noddings)

I’ve been back in St. John’s for 36 hours and I’m trying rapidly to get my feet on the ground here. Not that I really want to have my feet on the ground here as I remember the sights and sounds of Africa, but out of necessity in the week that needs to unfold in front of me. Thanks to all who came on the journey-it was all the richer since it was shared every step of the way.

This is “post-partum” time in which I grieve the adventure past and (more than usual) the loss of the adventure group. The moments shared will never be again though their memories will live on in the stories I tell of them. As I transition home, I get to tell the stories of Kilimanjaro, some already public, some private and I get to watch which stories rise to the time like cream on fresh milk; the stories that have a creamy richness that will inspire me to tell them over and over again. On first tellings, stories of laughter, camaraderie, and the power of will and determination erupt like pregnant lava.

In the quieter tellings, stories of landscapes inner and outer, of a deep fear of losing a friend to an altitude illness, of navigating terrain familiar yet so foreign at the same time, flow slowly from the same core. I wait to see what tellings are yet to be told and what exploration of my various voices of telling will bring in terms of memory and understanding. Each experience transforms from when we live it to when we recount it to when we pull it from the pool of inspiration that informs and inspires us.

As you can see, I am in a deeply reflective space as I transition in from one continent of being to another. Thanks for listening, both now and as the telling continues. I’m off to prep a keynote and make birthday plans for tomorrow. I’ve some pictures to my website: taloeffler.com and to my facebook account:http://www.facebook.com/album.php?aid=125489&l=0eba1&id=509940550 I invite you to poke around and see some of them.

Have a good week,

TA

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