Written by Robert J. Hastings

Tucked away in our subconscious is an idyllic vision. We see ourselves on a long trip that spans the continent. We are traveling by train. Out the windows we drink in the passing scene.

But uppermost in our minds is the final destination. Bands will be playing and flags waving. Once we get there our dreams will come true, and the pieces of our lives will fit together like a jigsaw puzzle. How restlessly we pace the aisles, damning the minutes for loitering – waiting, waiting, waiting for the station. We are sure that happiness awaits us at the station. Yet, all passengers will find that now that they are at the station they are somehow disappointed… We are thinking we can achieve happiness:

“When I’m 18.”

“When I buy a new 600SL Mercedes-Benz!”

“When I put the last kid through college.” “When I have paid off the mortgage!”

“When I am very rich.”

“When I reach the age of retirement, I shall live happily ever after!”

And then, when we reach our goal, we are perplexed, and cannot understand why the happiness we expected is not within our grasp.

Sooner or later we must realize there is no station, no one place to arrive at once and for all. Life may not be the party we hoped for, but the true joy of life is the trip. The station is only a dream. It constantly outdistances us.

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