Grant’s adventures were just about to keep getting bigger and bigger. When we last left our grapefruit friend he was contemplating his observations and what he had learnt so far. He was beginning to realise that life is actually a bit like a rollercoaster, full of ups and downs, stops and starts. Sometimes he felt like he was screaming along at a rapid rate on his adventure and he did not have time to think about what he was doing he just had to do it. However, between these rapid rides he also found that he had some time for contemplation. These were blissful moments of calm where there was a break in the challenges he was facing and provided an opportunity to reflect. It was completely up to Grant to choose whether or not he took these moments to reflect, after all this was his adventure. He was in charge to some extent. Grant was beginning to realise that he might not be in charge of the sequence of events and how the journey was unfolding, but he was in charge of his reactions to the events and his thoughts about the challenges he was facing. A positive thought and view point made the challenge so much more achievable.
As with all revelations in life, now that Grant had realised this he was about to be tested on whether or not he was ready to apply his new knowledge. Grant’s 7 hour hike lead him to the Percy Burn Viaduct….and his biggest challenge yet! His fear of falling was about to be tested as he bravely faced the 35 meter high viaduct.
You will be glad to know that Grant managed to roll the whole 125 meters to the other side, only to find that there was a slippery journey to the beach below down through the forest. Thinking that was the end of the challenge for the day Grant relaxed and took a moment to contemplate his achievement that day on the beautiful beach. It was then he realised that he would have to return to the top of the steep slopes before he could make his way back to the cabin. How did he achieve this….well after an initial wobble, he took a deep breath, put a positive mindset on and began to climb……up the steep slope at the side of the embankment!
Finally at the top he celebrated in style by leaping (possibly not voluntarily) from fellow trek members before being settled firmly back in the safety of his backpack to contemplate the achievement and challenges of the day.
The moral here? Well if a grapefruit can set his mind to it and achieve the impossible with a bit of positive thinking and determination, then so can you. One to contemplate on this week.
Sometimes life can be a lonely journey and as Grant begin his 2 day hike along Hunter Range to descend to Green Lake Hut he enjoyed some alone time to contemplate on the journey so far. Being a grapefruit he found it hard to communicate and express his feeling to his fellow travellers. How many times have we felt the same? He realised that everyone communicates in different ways and that the key to understanding people with compassion and empathy, is to first understand how they are communicating. That way you can work out what they are trying to say. This sounds an easy process but requires a great deal of inner strength and a multitude of skills. Some people need to be listened to, to be heard, others need to express themselves through the visual arts, through the written word. When you really think about it everything we do, say and act upon is a form of communicating in some way. Grant was beginning to find that his human companions were quite complex indeed.
As Grant bounced around in his backpack, which was now beginning to feel like home, he also realised that “home” is where the heart is. It is the place where you can relax and truly be you, where you are able to communicate freely and easily and are accepted for who you are as a unique individual. It is the place where you can be true to what is in your heart. There is a unique comfort and reassurance about finding yourself at home. With this realisation, for a brief moment, Grant forgot his loneliness and a sense of peace and contentment filled his grapefruit segments.
Have you ever had one of those days where you just want to hide? Well Grant was having one of those days when this photo was taken!
Often though that moment when we want to hide from the world that’s when we have to push ourselves to get out there and embrace life.
If you look closely at where our intrepid grapefruit is hiding, is it really the safest place to be? When you’re in it, it may seem safe but you can’t stop the wheels of time turning and although it may be OK to rest for a while, this is the best time you have to stand back and see the bigger picture. To embrace the stillness and have a true look around. From here, you might not like what you see but it is your chance to change it. From the stillness you can decide what direction to take when your intuition tells you it is time to embrace the world again.
What did Grant do next? He hitched a ride and carried on with his journey.
When we last left our hero, Grant the Grapefruit, he was enjoying a relaxing trip on the Milford Sound. What he was not aware of was that his biggest challenges were yet to come. Sometimes I think it is best not to know too much about your future. If we all knew what was to happen to us in life then we would probably choose to avoid situations which would involve us facing our fears. Sometimes it’s best to be oblivious to the road ahead and not realise until it’s too late, then there’s no turning back. However, in facing our fears we can feel the most amazing sense of achievement. It makes us stronger, more confident and makes us feel alive!
Grant had always had a fear of heights, being round he knew that in most situations he would roll to safety. However, most of the time when we are faced with our fears rational thinking goes right out of the window.
So after a long drive from Milford Sound to the start of a 2 day long hike through Fiordland, Grant enjoyed watching a lovely sunset. The next day he was faced with his first big challenge….several one man rope bridges which wobbled and creaked with every movement and seemed to be getting higher and longer the further he went! Thankfully, his first challenge was faced with the help of a friend. Our friends are our greatest gifts in life. If you have a friend who is prepared to stand by you through life’s challenges then you have a rare gift indeed. You will find that just knowing your friend is there for you, no matter what or how silly you feel you are being, will give you the strength to face anything, do anything or be who ever you want to be.
This post today is dedicated to all of my friends and Grant’s….from the bottom of my heart thank you!