My Thoughts

There are times for whom the poets rhyme. I am reminded of the mouse which Robert Burns once offered a wee bit of Scottish solicitude.

But Mousie, thou art no thy lane,
In proving foresight may be vain:
The best-laid schemes o’ mice an’ men,
Gang aft a-gley,
An’ lea’e us nought but grief an’ pain,
For promis’d joy.

My best laid schemes were to make copious notes on our daily meanderings but alas, it is Thursday and we sailed on Tuesday. Where the days and my plans went, like Burns, they have Gang aft a-gley (gone awry). The reality is, thirty-six or so hours of airports and airplanes plus nine hours of shifting zones and more wink than nod made for rather short temperament and an overwhelming demand to “sleep, perchance to dream” for more hours than I can now remember. And remember much, I cannot recall.

Monday afternoon despite the dazed deprivation, we walked the grounds of Montserrat (Sawtooth or serrated mountain,) and visited the cathedral housing the Black Madonna. Luckily, I have pictures. I say that as I have very little recollection of the tour, or of much of the day.

The Windsurf beckoned us on Tuesday. It was not a particularly pleasant beckoning given the rather unexpected surprises that awaited. First, was the encounter with a nasal swab to insure no CCP bioterrorist was attempting to stowaway. After it was determined that the CCP had thus far not invaded the darkest regions of my nasal passages, we were photographed, signed affidavits attesting to the fact that we were specimens of perfect health, given boarding passes in lieu of passports, luggage confiscated (to be returned later,) and directed to the gangplank. We then went to our cabin until the appointed hour for our mandatory safety drill at which time we were informed that masks were to be worn at all times except when in the pool, exercise room, or sitting down. That, my friends, as you might well surmise, did not sit well with yours truly. What added insult to injury was that no individual excursions were allowed. All off-board tours, excursions, activities were guided, masks were mandatory at all times, and no shopping. It just kept getting better and better. Not. Oh, and the excursions all came with a hefty price tag.

Immediately after the drill, I asked to speak with the hotel manager which was not a pleasant conversation. The upshot was, they were very loosey-goosey with the masks on board the ship. Rules are meant to be broken I suppose. A rather pleasant result of my conversation with the hotel manager is that I am now given the royal treatment. There are a few places where they are strict in rules enforcement, but few and far between so I can live with that. I have not gone on any of the excursions, chosen to stay on board, enjoy the views, and catch up on some of my reading. Oh, and sleep, sleep, sleep. Tuesday night into Wednesday I slept 13 glorious hours! Even took a nap Wednesday afternoon. Who says you can never catch up?

This is our fourth cruise on the Windstar line; we are unabashedly spoiled. All small ships, with fewer than 300 passengers (and as many crew,) this cruise 196 passengers so it is fantastic service. This is the third voyage; they were down for over 514 days due to the CCP wuflu pandemic. The food is, as always 5-star, James Beard, and all you can possibly eat. Makes up for any unpleasantness. As usual, the waitstaff, after first introductions, never miss a beat, call you by name, and are very attentive to you.

Wednesday, when I woke at 10:00 am after the aforementioned 13 hour deep unconscious rejuvenation, I ventured to the yacht club (actually a small lounge) where I spent the afternoon reading and enjoying the views of Palma de Mallorca. One thing I forgot to mention, I do not miss the smoke that has smothered Reno. Sure wish California would get its act together and put out their fires instead of blowing smoke our way. Clear blue skies. Dinner with good friends completed the evening.

Only slept for 9 hours Wednesday-Thursday. During the day, today (Thursday) was Mahón, Spain, the deepest natural harbor in the world, and the capital of the island of Menorca. Beautiful, beautiful. Next stop, Alghero, Italia!

Been reading a fascinating but deeply disturbing book, Woke, Inc. Eye opening read. One brief excerpt:

The Church of Diversity is as real as Christianity, Islam, or Hinduism, and its membership is growing every day. It has now grown powerful enough that, like many dominant churches throughout history, it has decided to begin punishing all the nonbelievers. A democracy may thrive on dissent, but a theocracy can’t tolerate it.

… only people who actually go to Hell are those who knew the truth but turned their backs on it: the worst sin of all is not nonbelief but apostasy. The Church of Diversity works the same way.

That’s just how religious belief systems work—you don’t get to pick your five favorite commandments and follow those. Since it’s a modern religion, the Church of Diversity just transcribes its commandments onto acronyms instead of stone tablets. It ties its dogmatic beliefs together by invoking words like “intersectionality” instead of “faith.”[1]

Just my thoughts for a Thursday for what it is worth.

[1] Vivek Ramaswamy, “Woke, Inc., Inside Corporate America’s Social Justice Scam” (New York, NY: Hatchette Book Group, Inc., 2021), 223, 236.

About the author: Deacon Chuck

Deacon Chuck was ordained into the permanent diaconate on September 17, 2011, in the ministry of service to the Diocese of Reno and assigned to St. Albert the Great Catholic Community. He currently serves as the parish bulletin editor and website administrator. Deacon Chuck continues to serve the parish of Saint Albert the Great Catholic Community of the Diocese of Reno, Nevada. He is the Director of Adult Faith Formation and Homebound Ministries for the parish, conducts frequent adult faith formation workshops, and is a regular homilist. He currently serves as the bulletin editor for the parish bulletin. He writes a weekly column intended to encompass a broad landscape of thoughts and ideas on matters of theology, faith, morals, teachings of the magisterium and the Catholic Church; they are meant to illuminate, illustrate, and catechize the readers and now number more than 230 articles. His latest endeavor is "Colloqui: A journal for restless minds", a weekly journal of about 8 pages similar in content to bulletin reflections. All his reflections, homilies, commentaries, and Colloqui are posted and can be found on his website: Comments are always welcome and appreciated. He is the author of two books: "The Voices of God: hearing God in the silence" which offers the reader insights into how to hear God’s voice through all of the noise that surrounds us; and "Echoes of Love: Effervescent Memories" which through a combination of prose and verse provides the reader with a wonderful journey on the way to discovering forever love. He regularly speaks to groups of all ages and size and would welcome the opportunity to speak to your group.

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