I have been putting together a book of contacts - mostly Quakers - for my sons which I hope will be a help for them on their year-long jouney round the world. On Sunday I will give it to them and say goodbye. I know that we will be in touch through email, Facebook and even this blog, but of course I will miss them. I am glad that they are going on this adventure and I expect it will be the beginning of a new phase in their lives and perhaps in mine, but it is hard not to worry.
On Monday my husband and I are going on a journey too - to America for nearly 3 weeks. Our main reason for going is to attend the QUIP [Quakers Uniting in Publications] conference in North Carolina but we are having a holiday too and going to Chicago, Cleveland and New York. I have to admit that I am worrying about this too. Partly this is my usual anxiety about flying but there are also difficult issues to be addressed at the conference and as the recording clerk I feel partly responsible. The changing face of Quaker publications means that our organisation will have to change too and I know that change can be difficult. On the other hand of course it can be liberating and even exciting. I will report back here later!
One part of the conference I am really looking forward to is a panel on Quaker blogging with Robin M and Will Taber which I am moderating. It will be great to meet with some of the bloggers I have encountered through their writing face to face and to talk about all things blog. One of the questions I would like to explore is why it seems there are so many more American Quaker bloggers than British and European ones. It is such a pity that I could not persuade another British blogger to attend.
Yesterday I was copying out more of Mary Waterhouse's diary when I came upon this passage -
"I have frequently thought lately that I must make mention of the mercy shewn me in being, as I trust, less anxious than I used to be. When a careful thought comes over me – anxiety about any one or anything, it is often turned into a prayer, before it resolves itself into a care. For this surely I may say 'Bless the Lord O my soul! & forget not all His benefits'."
Yet again this voice from the past speaks to my present condition and I will try to emulate her if I can.