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If you’re like most people, you only turn 50 once in your life. That momentous event for me is today. My wife and I celebrated the moderately successful completion of the first half of my life by fulfilling a lifelong dream to visit Italy.  It was everything I’d hoped that it would be and then some. During this adventure however, I discovered two alarming things:

First, there is a such thing as cultural overload. Although thinking that I would appreciate every single antiquity for the rich history imbued in each countless artifact, work of art, and structural masterpiece that survived hundreds or even thousands of years, I, as it turns out, am a cultural wimp. Despite having a college degree in fine art and thus a superficial understanding of some of what we would be seeing, the brainpower needed to process the myriad of monuments we encountered in person was more than I was prepared to produce and after so many days, the exhibits began blending together.

Second, there is no such thing as gelato overload; I can never get my fill of that incredible chilled cultivation. As Forrest Gump would say, “That’s all I have to say about that”; my bathroom scale will succinctly tell you the rest of the story.

So that’s what I’ve been doing for the last little while. Maybe you noticed my absence and maybe you didn’t. Walking the streets of Florence one night I mused to my wife that maybe I should change the title of this blog to “Pointless Observations” because it wouldn’t stand the same tests of time that had preserved our historic surroundings. We laughed about that and contemplated our contributions to the world around us. Hitting the big 5-0 makes a guy wonder if his life will amount to anything lasting I guess.  Highly unlikely that that anything could reach the magnitude of what we there experienced.

The truth is that I love my life’s work. I appreciate the interactions that I have with you as we journey the spinning world around us together, all trying to do the best we can.  I’m grateful that you let me participate in some of your own monumental occasions and that we can share our dreams together. Wishing you all the best that life has to offer!      

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