Dragons Are Eco-Friendly Transportation

“A rock pile ceases to be a rock pile the moment a single man contemplates it, bearing within him the image of a cathedral.”

— Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

“I believe in everything until it’s disproved.  So I believe in fairies, the myths, dragons.  It all exists, even if it’s in your mind.  Who’s to say that dreams and nightmares aren’t as real as the here and now?”

— John Lennon

If you were to hear someone utter the phrase, “Dragons are eco-friendly transportation,” what would you think?

They’re crazy, they’ve been reading too many fantasy novels, they’re understanding of reality is a bit different? Maybe that’s what we would think in the ‘practical’ world. The world of cubicles, traffic jams and chain restaurants.

Having great fun with my fellow DI appraisers - Cindy, Ian and Angela. (Yes, there were some William Tell references today)

But thank goodness there is a place where kids don’t have to conform to the limitations of the ‘practical’ world. That place is a place about which I’ve written before. One of my favorite places. One where the destination is imagination.

Of course I’m talking about the great kids program Destination Imagination, and today was my first time being an appraiser at the Oregon DI Metro regional tournament. While I can’t tell you anything about the challenge I appraised because of rules, obligation, and a sense of fairness to every other DI team, I can tell you it was fun!

We got to watch kids at their creative best. We got to watch kids thinking and dreaming. We got to watch kids collaborate together, laugh together, be silly together, and yet be totally serious about solving a problem … together.

Don’t think imagination is important? As you are reading, contemplate this –

  • Who’s idea was it to put a person on the moon?
  • Who’s idea was it that humans didn’t need horses for transportation anymore?
  • Who’s idea was it to automate dish washing, laundry and house cleaning?
  • Who’s idea was it that someone like me could write his thoughts in Tigard, Oregon on a Saturday night and have them read across the planet one second later?

All of these were the idea of someone with an imagination. Someone with the courage to dream. A person that probably also had a few people in his or her life to support those dreams. Maybe even a volunteer.

It takes a lot of volunteers to put on a DI tournament. Today, I have been told there were 70 of us. Without volunteers this doesn’t happen. The volunteers help create the safe and encouraging environment to make the kids feel comfortable enough to be creative. An environment where clever solutions are encouraged. Where imagination is indeed, the destination.

And yes, today, someone actually did say – “Dragons are eco-friendly transportation.”

Who knows, maybe they really are.

Volunteered at the Oregon DI Regional Tournament as an appraiser; a volunteer job where one might hear of dragons as a possible solution to our dependence on foreign oil.  

About Eric Winger

Our perception of time is key to how we use our time. The most fundamental way to change that perception is to give our time. This opens us up to new opportunities and ideas from which we can build to really make a difference. ... Yes, we *do* have time to make a difference!
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4 Responses to Dragons Are Eco-Friendly Transportation

  1. Natalie says:

    Fantastic, just fantastic — and fun, I’m sure. It would seem the opportunities for volunteerism are never ending and wide-reaching. There’s a niche for everybody! I made and served smoothies at my daughter’s Fun Fair yesterday — there’s always a way to serve and help. Thanks, Eric for all that you do, and for encouraging all of us to do likewise.

    • Eric Winger says:

      Smooth(ie) move! Love to hear it. .. You are right, there’s a niche for everyone to volunteer and make a difference.

      Kudos to you, and I’m sure the smoothies were excellent!

  2. Kristina Lindberg says:

    Sounds very cool! I think sometimes life and/or school can kind of drain the imagination out of kids if imagination is not encouraged.

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