Sunday, November 27, 2011
Wednesday, November 23, 2011
Today is my last day in London, at least for a little while. Yesterday, Eddie and I spent the day meandering the halls of the National Gallery, the Portrait Gallery, and watching the last day of the Australia/South Africa cricket match. This sport fascinates me for several reasons; it's soooo civilized, I mean they actually break for tea!, it requires ALOT of patience to watch as it can last 5 days, and it upsets my American pastime mentality.
We had a great time and were totally on the same page at the galleries as to when to linger and when to cruise past yet another room of religious art. It took me a whole week to crack that English exterior, but this American finally broke him down, haha! When you're still getting to know someone, you naturally spend a lot of time reading each other and negotiating boundaries. It's easy to end up following one another's lead and being too polite instead of just having a conversation where you put all the cards out on the table. It was nice to clear the air so to speak, even if it came at the end of the trip....better late than never! The National Gallery was really superb, especially their Impressionist collection, and more than made up for the bad taste the Tate Modern left in my mouth. The Modern's permanent collection really left something to be desired. It felt too contained. I like my modern art to be bold, loud, passionate, even if it's "ugly" I want to hear its voice. And unfortunately, I couldn't rationalize the 16 quid to see the Gehard Richter exhibit. However, Danny (one of the Kathmandu crew) came over to Ed's last night to hang out and lent me his member card.... winning! As soon as I publish this post, I'm headed back that direction. This evening, at least as of right now, we are headed over to Raj's for my farewell dinner. Raj is a brilliant chef!!!! We ate dinner there Monday night after the 3 of us went to see Snowtown (the movie about the Australian murders...damn!), and he randomly whipped up an off the cuff creation of deliciousness! I think Milo will join us, he doesn't even know I'm here because he's been out of town but Raj informed him he had a Nepalese surprise for him.....
Then tomorrow at 9am I will be headed to Heathrow, as I am finally making my way back home....It's amazing actually, that I've been away from the States since Aug 29. All my experiences at the same time feel like ages ago and 5 minutes ago. It will be bittersweet to leave London. Bitter, not only because of who I'm leaving but also because it means the international part of this adventure has come to its end. And who knows when I will get to journey back out...hopefully 'same time next year.'There are people and places that I'm already desperately missing. I have olive trees to tend to and an Italian knight's company to bask in, in Mompeo. I have Nepali festivals and family to enjoy in Kathmandu.
Monday, November 21, 2011
Friday, November 18, 2011
Saturday, November 12, 2011
Friday, November 11, 2011
Since I am the queen of bartering, I managed to do a wee bit o Christmas shopping for the fam as well as ship all my shorts and tank tops back to the States (since it's only in the 40s and 50s in London) all for under $100... probably only about $85! Score! Totally winning!
Today is only Saturday, I don’t leave for London till 12:55p on Sunday. However, today is 11/11/11 and is in my mind a very auspicious day.
I, like probably many of you, make a wish whenever the time reads 11:11. I keep wishing for the whole minute, and today we get 1440 minutes of wishes!! AND 1440 adds up to 9, a very powerful number in numerology. In my pranayama sessions, all the number combinations of the breath cycles added up to 9….no coincidence there :-) I won’t bore you with all the woo-woo details, so look it up if you’re truly curious. I’m choosing to write my last Nepal entry today because this trip (so far) has been one continuous string of wishes come true, most of which I did not even think to make. It has morphed and evolved into something beyond what I could have ever imagined in the beginning.
Wednesday, November 9, 2011
Yada, yada, yada... a day of online research and a phone call to Cheap Tickets, I was not able to change my existing ticket since it was a partially used one way. (Rome to Kathmandu and then Kathmandu to Cape Town) I would have to buy a brand new ticket... not only to London but back to the States.....ouch! But my heart still kept saying, " London, London, London". I double and triple-checked with Eddie that it would be okay to do a bit of couch surfing and reassured him (and Raj) that I would be the world's best guest. He sent back, "Don't worry bout a thing....cause every thing is gonna be alright" ..... and that sealed the deal. I let go of the financial fear factor completely. Prajunna and Prassana immediately started making calls to their travel agency connections to get me the very best deal. I went to bed that night with a smiling heart.
This morning I woke up to send another email to Brett amending my previous request and a response from him was already there saying that he currently had 3 WWOOFers, and while he felt terrible my plans had fallen through he could not afford to host anyone else...at least not till the middle of December. I just laughed. I then called Cheap Tickets again to cancel my one way from CPT back to the States...and as it turned out I was able to get a FULL refund! I couldn't believe it. I was convinced that at most I would get a credit with Turkish Airlines to be able to use within the year, I never in a million years expected to get my money back! Talk about validation! The guy even said that if I call back the next morning to cancel the leg of the trip to CapeTown from here that he was fairly sure I would be refunded that amount as well. Are you kidding me?! Fan-fucking-tastic!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
THEEEENNNNNN after breakfast, Prajunna found me a ticket from Kathmandu to London to Savannah for almost $300 less than the total of my refund! I just got back from the travel agency, E ticket to Heathrow burning a hole in my pocket! I haven't stopped smiling all day!
From Day 1 of planning this trip, South Africa for various reasons has been sketchy. You may remember in most of those early posts, when all the Italian and Nepal plans fell right into place I was always saying that South Africa was still up in the air. I had to keep pushing at it, and yet I wasn't able to let it go. While I wasn't able to let it go, at the same time the closer I got I really couldn't see myself there. I was supposed to start taking my Malaria antibiotics on Nov 1st, but I didn't because I just had this feeling I wasn't going.
This is the most perfect way for me to start Part III, the 'LOVE' part of my adventure. A few of you may know how much I love England, the UK in general, but especially England. The first time I stepped off the plane I felt I had come home (except of course for my stupid American accent that makes me feel like a country bumpkin) There is an old and deep resonance there for me....I can feel the energy of past lives. I remember sitting on the plane with my mother after my first trip and crying like a child because I had to leave.... But now I want to cry tears of joy because I get to return....
I have no idea why this is all working out as it is...... but I don't care because I am soooo happy and so grateful!
I arrive in London this Sunday the 13th and will depart for the States on Dec 2.... I did not want to outstay my welcome right off the bat and 2 weeks felt appropriate...... but who knows? If I've learned nothing else from this whole trip, I've learned to STAY OPEN!
Monday, November 7, 2011
- I am in no way judging the technique of Vipassana and it is not my intention to be disrespectful, but you know me I gotta tell it like it is.
- There are parts that may be T.M.I … sorry, but crucial for the full effect.
- For my international readers, note the American reference re: McRuff the crime dog... cartoon and mascot used to teach kids safety, etc
Meenie: How can I help you?
Me: I respect your institution and the technique however, I need to get my passport, because I intend to leave... today.
Meenie: Ooooooh, noooooo, noo. You can't.
Me: Uhhh, well I'm really not asking your persmission, I'm telling you..... I'm leaving.
Meenie: Today is a bery hard day for eberyone. The days go bery fast after today.
Me: I doubt that and no offense, but I don't care about everyone. I want to leave. Soooo, my passport?
Meenie: Noooooo, you have committed to the ten days.
Me: Technically yes, but now I've changed my mind. You cannot make me stay or hold my passport, so who do I need to speak to?
Meenie: I must warn you that it's bery dangerous to leave early.
Me: Yea? Well I'll take my chances, I like to live dangerously. Passport?
Meenie: Well, if you have made your decision then you are right we cannot hold you here. A volunteer will come to get you after the 1pm meditation bell.
Me: Great! Thanks. Namaste.
After signing a release form assuming any physical or mental harm that may come from having been there and/or from leaving early, I clutched my passport tight swearing never to surrender it again and practically ran out the gate.
A lovely walk and short taxi ride later I arrived at Prem's gate and felt a tidal wave of love and relief....sensations from head to feet.