Saturday, February 07, 2009

Silent Movie

Crash wondered if there was some irony in our watching Mel Brook's Silent Movie as my first flick since I came back from the Long Retreat. There might be!

Before I left, Stratoz wondered what it would be like to return from a 30-day retreat in silence, doing the Spiritual Exercises. As Joe Koczera SJ noted there is much that you can't put into words about the Long Retreat, but here is what I can muster at this moment in answer to Stratoz's query:

After packing the car, and saying good-bye to my director - my car refused to start. I trooped back up the stairs in the photo to my director's office to beg a final grace: a jump start. Maybe my car (which had started without incident the day before) was picking up my conflicted feelings about leaving? I was all joy to go home, but it was hard to let the place and people go.

I drove with no music, no audiobook, no radio, no phone for 3 hours. The pull of the silence was still strong. Finally I called my dad.

I'm losing my voice - this is the ultimate irony.

Seeing my sons, each an inch taller, and both suddenly much more grown-up.

Hugs galore.

Being overset by the number of choices I had in clothes this morning. I went with a half dozen white turtlenecks, two pairs of jeans, two sweaters (green and pink) and a hoodie. Picking a sweater this morning to top off the jeans and turtleneck seemed almost too overwhelming . There is something to contemplate here.

Flying down the highway after nearly 5 weeks of being a pedestrian felt odd. (I drove into town twice on errands, I don't think I ever got over 25 mph on the narrow, icy roads.)


  1. The degree of jealousy I feel bears no resemblance to Ignatian indifference!

    My word verification is minnistr.

    Not time to give up yet.

  2. What a beautiful group you had....There were only three of us on my Long Retreat, though shorter retreatants came and went so the community was always shifting.

    Hope your voice stays okay--what an irony.

  3. GG -

    Somewhere early on I realized that indifference is nothing to bring to the Exercises, so maybe it's not jealousy, but desire?

    And I'm certain that the Holy Spirit lurks in those word verifications...

    Sophia - the voice has returned, though volume control is a little iffy!

  4. welcome back to real world...

    happy blogging,

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  5. lol re car...Mine pulled the same stunt a couple of times when I was due to leave retreats...I presume if/when I actually make the 30 day someone will actually steal the thing! The rejoining driving thing sounds a bit like the experience when I return to land after a spell on our narrow boat, which, come to think of it, is a pretty good paradigm for a retreat. and I'm actually going to try to retreat properly afloat later this year.
    It's good to have you back, but we do appreciate the mixed feelings. What a privilege/blessing to have done it. And my word verification is blesseall

  6. Thanks.

    After my first 8 day retreat, on 422, behind a construction vehicle, a rock did in my windshield.