(instagram photo of an acorn spiral made by one of the Earth Art students at Squam)
My week at Squam Art Workshops has come and gone. Like last year, it’s a time for me to peel away all the masks I hide behind and get in touch with my raw self. I’m definitely known to most as a city girl so I never know what the woods are going to have in store for me but this time they embraced me with open arms and enveloped me with their branches. This year, I came back as a teacher so my experience was totally different. When I say I learned as much as I taught I am being completely honest; it’s one of those things you’re supposed to say but I mean it. I learn so much about myself, about life, about the kindness of strangers, at Squam.
On the second to last night, Alena, a fellow teacher and all-around awesome woman, talked about the ripples that we send out at Squam and in our lives beyond the New Hampshire woods, ripples of love and kindness and hope and how these ripples make new ripples. Every time we choose to be kind and open hearted, we send these ripples out. We affect other people’s lives in some small way and then they pass those ripples on too. I kept this in mind all day Monday when I was back in South Philly, surprising my neighbors and local shopkeepers with my smile and conversation, instead of looking away and keeping my mouth shut. It’s an important lesson.