This is the appropriately named "Big Buddha" on Lantau Island, Hong Kong. In January Anne and I and a reluctant Alec made the journey by ferry and bus along a winding road to the top of the hill. Buddha is even higher still, and you climb 100 steps to get to the base of the statue. Alec had cheered up by this stage and counted the steps to make sure the guidebook was correct (it was).
Buddha seems an appropriate image to illustrate the maxim of paying attention. How easily we rush about our lives, not looking right or left, up or down, and how much we must miss! Children know this instinctively, but we chide them to "hurry up". Yesterday I was out walking at 6.30am, first day back on class coming up, and it was raining. I admit I was feeling a little glum, when four kookaburras flew over my head to the nearest tree and perched there laughing raucously. It is impossible not to smile when a kookaburra is laughing and I realised that they were celebrating the rain - and I should too. So being cooped up with 30 kids at recess and lunch on "wet duty" didn't seem so bad after all!