It is that time of the year when Nature wakes up from a period of darkness, rain, dampness and depression; for most of us, anyway. The time when there was no sunlight, and finally, our happiness is, however slowly, letting in the Spring.
This is a period of awakening which promises redemption, hope and prosperity.
In the midst of all of that I feel a tiny, but definitely present, extra spring in my step. The season of longer days and greening of leaves indicates that there is an IGAL meeting coming up. It is a midterm, and, in IGAL terms, it represents the new beginning. Like the newly budding spring flowers and newborn birds trying their wings, our midterms are short and expectant. The wish, intent actually, is to please; but there is a certain hesitancy present as in all endeavors, no matter how many times we have done them before.
The spring IGAL midterm gathering is about reuniting, recommitting and reconfirming. It is about standing on our feet after the rains and wanting to be counted, to be present. It asks us to reaffirm our values and try to get better, to do better, to improve.
The meeting is a full three day “high” (for me it is), where life reasserts itself, where hands are shaken, shoulders are embraced, cheeks are kissed.
We expect to meet our colleagues again and share our experiences with them, to talk and to listen; to feel good knowing we can do no wrong. To feel safe and confident in our actions. To share ideas, experiences and, in some small way, maybe secrets. To allow life to flourish.
And, of course, to learn from experiences and thoughts of others.
That is what IGAL midterms mean to me.
There is an extra expectation connected to the prospect of being in Bordeaux: the mild climate and great wine. And all the people I will see again.
As I spotted the Grand Hotel, dominating in stature and presiding forcefully over the large square in Bordeaux, I knew I had come to the right place. For me, anyway.