You know that moment when you realize you've not been practicing what you preach?
I had one a few months ago...was in the process of telling someone that getting out of their comfort zone might provide them with some of the insight/inspiration that they were looking for. And then I went home and grumped in my journal about feeling stagnant and self-absorbed.
(Physician, heal thyself.)
So I applied for a program that I had heard good things about, but didn't really get. Didn't get largely because it wasn't music/arts focused, or education-centered - my two primary professional areas.
Today I woke up (much too) early, and spent the day with a group of folks as we were walked through some of the big point of local government. We met and talked with several members of the Board of Supervisors. We ate lunch with members of Fire Station 40, and learned about the primary concerns of the police chief, fire chief and sheriff's office. We saw both the primary 911 crisis response center and the secondary center. (In case of large-scale emergency, redundancy is a very good thing!)
I'll be honest: as someone wholly, blissfully unfamiliar with all of these things on a daily basis, I'm feeling both grateful and completely overwhelmed by the amount of information and the generosity of the people who run these places, these offices. Because - regardless of whether I agree with their policies or politics - they've all set out to make a difference, and to serve their community. Some of these folks are in my class, and on my content team. I'll be honest - knowing that one of them could be the person on the truck coming to my aid if I was injured or in crisis is a HUGE relief - they're great people.
(And a serious perspective check for Little Miss Navel Gazer.)
Feeling grateful for the exposure to people and places that I wouldn't have access to, for information that changes my worldview, and for a glass of wine and some quiet time to process it all.