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If you were to say that I had a ‘break’ between TIP sessions, I may just call you crazy.  It was simply a time without TIPsters, but break? Not so much.  Refer to the title of this blog: never stationary… Let us leave semantics out of it though, call it what you will.  I say it was a blessing (but what isn’t?).  I got to give lots of love to people in my life and places on this earth, and get loved on back by said people and the aforementioned wonders of nature.  Vague? Yeah, my apologies.  Here’s a play-by-play!

Taylor came in right on time on Saturday evening, not without a close call! He nearly missed his flight, but conquered the challenge by cradling his carry on and running sans flip flops through the Charlotte airport.  I do believe he said, “It can’t be that big of an airport,” as I sounded uncertain about the 40 minute layover he had when we talked before his flight. Famous last words haha.  40 turned into 5 minutes though because the first plane didn’t have a place to park.  Once he got in, we enjoyed dinner at a local place I had yet to go to, Satisfactions, and then met up with some TIP staff.

Carman, Alpana and I – gonna miss Carman!

Oh, and he came bearing gifts! He brought me a book, chocolate from his parents trip to San Fran, annnd snacks his mom made.  The main ingredient? Peanut butter.  She knows the way to my heart!

Sunday. Now, THAT was a day! We went to Pilot Mountain.

I’ve climbed a mountain in England and one in China, but I have never been on one in the states.  The views were so humbling, calming, all the while still adrenaline producing.  At one point we encountered a storm – it was actually pretty exciting.  We hid under a rock a bit for cover from the drops, and I learned that the chance of being struck by lightening was far greater than I thought…oops.

All in all it was a 9.5 mile hike – elevation was a key component! Pretty sure my heart rate went as high as it does during a track workout. I love moving my body and pushing it to its limits. It leads to greater visions of what life has; added benefit is having to work hard for it. I want to go back, and I can’t wait to see more of this country and its landscapes.  Still have yet to go to a national park..that is next on the list.  It’s been on the list for a while, though, since I have less chances to get to one. But I’m holding out!

Monday, Taylor and I went to the mall and the REI store in Durham, and left our mark on a bridge. I would say it was the only delinquent act I’ve ever done. However, this bridge is dubbed free speech tunnel.  Hence, it’s legal…

It was going to be a day ‘off’ from physical activities. But I should have known better! We just can’t say no to a state park within driving distance. We went to ENO River state park and ran a 4 mile loop.  I asked the lady at the office which trail was best for running and she said the one that was the widest.  Then she said, “It’s also our most strenuous.” And she smiled.  Uhh, yeah our legs felt that for sure! Such a great venture though! Maybe one day we will settle for dinner and a movie?…nahhh.

We met up with my parents for dinner that night.  So nice to have everyone in one place!

Tuesday and Wednesday my parents continued upping the dosage of the medicine I needed: good company and soul-satisfying conversation. Activities were minimal – shopping, food, movie and touring campus.  I’m so glad I got to see them! Taking a week to drive for three days and see me for three…I don’t deserve it but they bless me with it anyway.  Love you mom and dad!

TIP term 2 begins tomorrow, and the kids come Sunday.  BRING IT TIP. I know you’ll surprise me no matter how prepared I feel.

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forbearance = patient endurance

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