I had this beautiful and lofty goal of documenting my entire trip to India.
I wanted to tell the story of hiking the tea plantations and learning everything there is to know about how tea is made. Paint a story of how funny and kind the guide was in Munnar. How his family worked the plantations and how he was so proud of the english he'd learned through reading books. About the tuk tuk that took us around town and how foreign it felt. I wanted to boast about the auvayitic massage I got, proclaiming my hipness by agreeing and citing all of the hip health bloggers. How I read two books that changed my life. To proclaim how I checked off the bucket list item of "seeing an elephant in it's natural habitat" even though it was obviously someone's pet.
More importantly, I wanted to gush about the wedding in Goa. How driving through slums to the resort changed the way I view my world. How there were crazy stray dog everywhere. To explain my serious struggle with India time. I wanted to paint a picture of how incredibly beautiful the wedding was. How welcome I felt with the family. How everyone made the point to thank me for being part of the experience, even though they were overly generous at all times. To explain what it was like to swim in the Indian Ocean. To tell you all about how the groom rode in on a white horse and how Richa, the bride, legit looked like a doll. She was so perfect. To tell you all about my new friends. I wanted to admit that I cried all through the ceremony and how I drank way too many stop-light shots. How I was too hung over to go to the the traditional blessing ceremony before the wedding. TO EXPLAIN HOW DESPERATE I WAS FOR A GRILLED CHEESE.
The thing is, parsing the detail of the trip from the person I went on this trip with is something that has taken time. And while I was traveling with a partner, I spent a lot of time alone. Reading, observing and processing. Those are my memories alone.
My grandfather passed the second night of the trip, as I mentioned in my first India post. My devastation paired with traveling alongside an introvert, forced mental space and seriously deep reflection. The big things that surfaced were:
+ To be hugely thankful for the life I was birthed into.
+ To not be afraid to live a big life. Becoming me is my purpose.
+ That I have creative power (we all do) and it's my job to nurture it and make time for it.
Though there are almost two dozen Indian languages, my naive brain kept returning to a Sanskrit chant that I learned at my yoga studio here at home: "Gam Gam Ganapati Sharanam Ganesha." Recently I've learned that Ganesha is the elephant headed deity known as the remover of obstacles and god of beginnings. Elephants have always been my thing and without getting too meta, this trip undoubtedly removed obstacles and initiated an important new beginning...
Which is poetic, at least.
I know now that when things fall apart there is a purpose. I know so truly that every choice we make is the start to something that will play later. This fills me with a kind of hope and trust that is new to me and I am more grateful than ever. The magic that has come from this trip is much bigger than I could've pictured. It was truly a trip that's changed my life.
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