A Travellerspoint blog

The Beginning

Trying to get underway

storm 51 °F

We have been enjoying San Francisco for three days, even in the pouring rain. We wandered through China Town and into St. Mary's, the only building left standing after the 1906 earthquake and fire, and we heard the clang of the cable cars. We were moved by Alcatraz and intrigued by the Museum of Modern Art. Last night we began our world cruise adventure with a gala dinner at the Jewish Museum, not paying much attention to the (fine) food because we were all reconnecting with each other. Most of our fellow passengers (220 of the 300 people on the Silver Whisper) have travelled together before on one of these long cruises. This morning, we went to worship at St. Gregory Nyssa, a rather unusual Episcopal church in the city. We gathered in the entry hall, a large circular space decorated with ninety larger than life size saints glittering in gold above our heads. Malcolm X dances next to Queen Elizabeth I who dances next to a Pakistani boy named Iqbal Masih who fought against slavery, who dances next to St. Teresa of Avila. And as these saints kicked up their heels above our heads we danced into the chairs arranged for the liturgy of the word. And after we heard the word proclaimed with vigor and heard it resonate in the following silences, we moved again, this time in a line dance back to the Eucharistic table. The choir was dispersed throughout the congregation so all our voices were supported - until time for the anthems when the choir collected in a group next to the altar table. The congregation was both very intimate and close and familiar and connected with each other (they knew how to do those dances while our feet stumbled) and also amazingly friendly and helpful to us strangers, welcoming us into their journey. We thought and prayed about the Epiphany, about light in the darkness, about finding the Babe not in Jerusalem but in a village, about beginning a journey. And we pray that this journey we are beginning on a little ship in a vast ocean will be a time of seeing light in unexpected places.

Just a moment ago we learned that our 6 pm departure under the Golden Gate Bridge into the Pacific Ocean has been delayed until tomorrow morning because of weather. We are delighted because we will not be trying to look up at the bridge in the dark and in the rain but in tomorrow's sunlight. We are also hopeful that we can get some of the many striking photos we took to share with you out of the phone and into the computer. For now, you will have to imagine saints dancing and us very excited about this new adventure.
Bill and Hope

Posted by HopeEakins 18:42 Archived in USA

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Safe travels! We look forward to sharing in your adventures from afar.
As you set off, here is a Celtic Blessing for your journey:
May the everlasting Father shield you
East and west wherever you go.
Happy 2019 to you both!

by Steve Crocker

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