Dr. Ferberâ€™s Water Journal – Day 23: Fifty Years Under The Bridge
Today we made a long and very interesting journey from Shanghai to Beijing. We ended up arriving hours after the scheduled time due to a maintenance issue that pulled our plane off the tarmac. I wasnâ€™t too disappointed to get off the plane since it was one of the hottest days in Beijing this year and the air conditioning on the flight was not keeping up. The second plane was cooler, but I couldnâ€™t tell since I had just run almost a kilometer after losing the group and coming within a hair of missing the flight. Iâ€™ll spare you the full story, but suffice it to say I wish I knew Mandarin â€“ it would have saved me 15 minutes in the custody of airport security and a second run through the pat down.
Beijing is a very different city than its southern neighbor. I would describe it as modern in the sense that Shanghai was postmodern and Beijing has a more modernist feel â€“ at least what I can see of it. The air pollution here isnâ€™t just noticeable, it is painful. My eyes have been burning since we arrived and the visibility is very low. However, it is worth it to be here with these people at this time.
This evening at dinner Bob and Alice Evans, our facilitators for the seminar Iâ€™m attending, celebrated 50 years of marriage. They shared many stories of their early relationship at dinner, but my favorite involved the bridge I blogged about just a couple of weeks ago. Bob was quite a social activist and the night before his wedding called Alice to let her know that he would be marching in a peace walk from Selma to Montgomery, Alabama. She put her foot down and made him go straight to Mobile for the wedding to prevent him from being in jail instead of with her at the aisle, but she went through with it even though she knew what she was getting into. Her reasoning â€“ â€śI knew my life would never be boring!â€ť
In just one week Christina and I will celebrate 16 years of water flowing under the bridge of our marriage. We could find worse examples than Bob and Alice for how to spend a life. Happy Anniversary â€“ and thanks for the sacrifice of spending it with us!