Notes from Jan

Go Green

June 22, 2017

Remember Kermit the Frog’s song, ‘It’s not easy being green”?

It’s not, whether we’re talking about the environment or personal growth.

One day in Alesund, I’d gone into a Tourist Information kiosk to inquire about the nearest bathroom. I learned I needed a coin to enter the stall. After finding  a 50 Kroner bill in my purse,  I squealed,”I’m rich!” The young woman shook her head and said, “Money doesn’t make one truly rich.” Wise Norwegian.

 This morning after writing postcards to the Grands,  I stretched and looked out the window from my chair in the Explorer’s Lounge. Since I booked an inside cabin on a lower deck to save money(green stuff), I must emerge from my cave to determine what’s happening with the weather and outside world.

Pretty soon, I put down pen and postcards to sit and stare.  My eyes focused on a tree standing just outside the fortress in Oslo’s harbor where we’ve docked.  With most of its branches lopped off, the tree looked odd but green and growing. The tree mirrored my life after losing Jud and more as I age. There are times I feel the ache from lopped off parts, yet  aware of growth in old limbs.  This cruise delivered nutrients of laughter, friendship, new experiences like a”balm in Gilead to heal the wounded soul.”

Tonight’s the Passenger Talent Show.   At the urging of friends and my son who encouraged me to”Go into the nearest phone booth, put on your cape and come out as Super Speaker”, I auditioned and made the cut.

It’s almost time for me to head over to the theatre, so I’ll sign-off, put on my cape and make haste.

Kermit’s right.

“It’s not easy being green.”

Is growth ever?

P.S. It’s midnight.  Show’s over.  I won.

Stunned and excited.





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  • Reply Dan Russ June 22, 2017 at 10:17 pm

    So your shipmates have discovered your gift as a storyteller and the gift you are to so many of us. Congrats!

  • Reply Linda June 22, 2017 at 10:31 pm

    Oh, how I would love to have been there!! You are such a gift as you share yourself with all of us!! Congrats on the win!!!

  • Reply Marty Lefever June 22, 2017 at 10:45 pm

    Amazing!!! Not surprised!! You’re a winner!

  • Reply Jim Trent June 22, 2017 at 10:58 pm

    Bravo, Jan!

  • Reply Rita Dove June 22, 2017 at 11:11 pm

    I’m not st all surprised!!!! Jumping for joy in VA!!!

  • Reply Janna Peterson June 22, 2017 at 11:36 pm

    How wonderful! The power of your words reaches deep and resonates with a us all…and now with new friends too! You are a gift…and now a winner 🙂

  • Reply Chris June 22, 2017 at 11:43 pm

    Kudos to you! I am not a bit surprised! I know quite a few who had heavenly box seats cheering you on to, too!!

  • Reply Nancy Mering June 23, 2017 at 12:12 am

    You don’t say what your prize was, Jan. Nothing green, I’m guessing. . . How perfect for you to be able to share your Norwegian heritage and stories in that place and with those people. I think we all find this very gratifying. Congratulations–

  • Reply Laura June 23, 2017 at 12:16 am

    You won!!!! Tell us all!!!!! You are an amazing woman! And Christ follower! And encourager! Do tell us what you performed.

    I’m GREEN with envy I didn’t get to see it in person!!!!! YouTube?!!!!!!

  • Reply Maggie Rowe June 23, 2017 at 1:44 am

    Any chance your performance was videotaped? Your friends would pay good money, green money, to see it!

  • Reply Madeline June 23, 2017 at 12:19 pm

    of course you did You are an inspirational and funny speaker. I loved when you spoke at Grace Chapel’s Women’s study and events. God has blessed you to see his love in the world all around you. You helped me to step out and speak to Women in my Church when God put something on my heart. You and Cynthia Fantasia have been among the older women in my life who have encouraged me. God took a scared girl and made a strong woman. Thank God.

  • Reply Linda Moore June 23, 2017 at 3:32 pm

    I’m not surprised at all that you won!! I’m sure you delighted everyone!!

  • Reply Jeri June 23, 2017 at 4:39 pm

    Of course you won Jan! I would have put green money on it! So grateful your gifts continue to bless and spead joy around the world. Continue to soak in the friendships around you on this voyage…

  • Reply Randall K Mathews June 23, 2017 at 5:03 pm

    Hi Jan:

    Congrats for your stunning win of the speaking contest in Oslo. You will have a lot of stories to share with us when you return to Boston. We admire you and give thanks to God for your friendship.

  • Reply Dale Lefever June 23, 2017 at 5:51 pm

    Thanks. Congratulations. Travel safely. And, “go blue.” Sorry!


  • Reply wendy lane June 23, 2017 at 7:45 pm

    Surely it is recorded somewhere we can all see it?! Soooo fun and wonderful that you won – not surprising at all! I love it!!!

  • Reply Marge June 24, 2017 at 10:54 am

    Congratulations on the win! Never a doubt in my mind that this would be the outcome. Your gift for storytelling shines!

  • Reply Nancy Sheys June 24, 2017 at 8:14 pm

    Good for you for stepping out and taking the risk!

  • Reply Anna Iltis June 26, 2017 at 8:05 pm

    How wonderful!! What story did you tell??

  • Reply Anna Iltis June 26, 2017 at 8:06 pm

    Not shocked or stunned!!

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