Hello my Valentines, hope Tuesday was all it should have been for all of you. I am not and never have been a fan of this day (except for the chocolate – that’s the best) but 2017 is all about being different. I might have to learn to love love after all. So happy wishes to all from a brand new romantic. May you all roar.
Don’t be so surprised my readers, I promised more this 2017 year. I don’t have any travels on the horizon that I can share about yet – some ideas and some dreams are swirling in my mind. It won’t be a year to sit still for certain.
Today, I worked on my intention of kindness. Not on purpose – a sort of by accident. I was in the supermarket.
I am a smiler – gets me in trouble, crazy people approach me all the time but I cannot help it, I smile. I don’t want to be one of those crank pot old ladies with a grumpy face. Besides, I was born under the bright August sun – maybe I am moody and mercurial, my resting nature is sunny. It’s how I love, it’s how I deal – not on purpose, I shine a bit of sunshine around. It’s completely annoying to my cynical side and not for nothing, it’s a bit of a chore too. Not in a happy go lucky kind of way, goodness no. But sunny all the same.
You might as well all really get to know me this year – no more cryptic references and 30 year old stories – and for my friends and family who already do, stay the course. I care for my octogenarian year old sassafras of a mother. I didn’t plan this but this is anchor that keeps me in this cow town most of the year and why my wings cannot spread and fly me so so far away from here permanently – just now and again, more again please always. And so on Sundays, I need to go buy the food as the unintentional caregiver I have become. Don’t worry, I always buy her gin. It makes her happier. She’s old, don’t judge.
Back to the supermarket, smiling me first got a sweet old man to hand me coupons I didn’t need – he insisted. I turned them down three times but I took them and walked on. The market was humming with people and long endless check out lines. I chose one and the woman in front of me, dark circles under her eyes, frazzled was unloading her towering cart. No bagger, slow check out clerk – so she was bagging herself and left her still half full cart in front of me. So, I unloaded it for her, one of those selfless, selfish things we can opt to do. The person behind me thanked me, clearly we all were tired of the market. I offered her the coupons just because but she said no and then gave me another coupon instead that I could use. After she was done, I gave the old man coupons to the frazzled woman ahead of me because someone needed to take them. Weird paying it forward backwards moment. Why am I even telling you all this story which is nice but maybe a bit too much information and smidgen boring?
I am telling you all because it’s been a hard weekend and a hard 2016, it started hard, ended hard and sometimes, we all forget that the tiniest act of kindness can be like a butterfly wing’s beat, that flows out into the world like wind of goodness – kindness is sunshine on a winter’s day. Even my cynical heart believes in this concept (in a sort of fairytale I refuse to not believe it kind of way – I am complicated). And if it’s not under a foreign sky, I’ll accept the commonplace supermarket kindness kind of sunshine on a holiday Monday, 2017, on day two. You know why? Summer is invincible and it will always warm your soul.
And that dear readers, is #2 of of 2. Not so bad for a reformed blogslacker.
“Africa has her mysteries and even a wise man cannot understand them. But a wise man respects them.”
Miriam Makeba (South African singer and civil rights activist)
Tomorrow it is – meanwhile, surrounded by piles of clothing, twists of plugs, missing adaptors, stray Euros, matchless socks, you’d hope that someday I get better at this part, the leaving.
Why do I go? Why must I go back? Zebras. No really, I travel because my mind gets too cluttered and being in new challenging places makes me a bit more honest with myself, helps me clear up the clutter in the face of the unknown. Who is the traveler in me that I meet on the road? She’s the best version of me now, I’d hope. The one who has an open mind, an open heart and let’s all she meets have a moment, even those on the hustle. I am not as good at that at home. I judge, I grouse, I get bogged down, I am petty on my bad days. The mystery of the unknown, unplanned makes it all better somehow.
I’ll try to update from out there but out there has spotty wifi. Be well, ten readers, thanks for reading, following along.
Kathmandu: as dusty and hectic as expected but even more crowded during the beginning of the biggest Hindu festival of the the year: Diwali, the Festival of Lights, celebrating the victory of light over darkness, knowledge over ignorance, good over evil and hope over despair. What better to experience a brand new land. Five days of gift giving, storytelling and connection with all beings that are connected to all things. Deep. Thought provoking. Day two every thing goes to the dogs. Then the cow, then the bull, then brothers and sisters. And maybe a little moonshine gets drunk and people dance until the early morning. Family, love, joy. Letting the light dispel the darkness is a powerful message from this powerful land. Kathmandu seems ancient and modern and really trying to move from the dark days of the early 2000s when extremists ruled the day and unless one wanted to climb the highest mountain the tourists stayed away. Surely the travelers still came, they always do but to push the economy on when tourism is so so important so too are the rest are needed. More later when I have fully recovered from my short trek that seemed maybe like climbing my own highest mountain. In the meantime, Happy Diwali my readers, family and friends.