I woke up one night in Raja during a storm. It was so loud and hot and everything felt damp. My skin was hot from a day spent out on the water in the sun. All my senses were uncomfortable and overwhelmed, there was no escaping any of it!
I got up and went to the deck and suddenly I thought, I am not going to live through this. At that moment I knew I was never going to make it home. I didn’t feel scared or sad. I actually felt really calm. I sat on the lounge chair and watched the storm and thought about my life. I couldn’t stop smiling. I’ve been struggling (not the right word as that suggests it’s negative which it is not) with how to live my life. I have struggled with the idea of attachment to material things and by that, I mean things that are not God, higher source, universe what ever word you want to insert here. Nothing outside yourself can make you happy as it’s all temporary and the loss will cause suffering. All these things in our life are illusion and distracts us from our higher source. To an extent I believe this, maybe someday I will completely I don’t know. To me it is the experiences I have had, the people I’ve met from all over the world that have brought me closer to my idea of god. I love to travel, and it is through traveling that I have been exposed to different people, different ways of thinking, of being. Traveling has lessened my ignorance, increased my compassion, my understanding and the volume of my heart. My vision, my actions, go far beyond my every day world and now include people and places I can only see in my memory or imagination.
The morning we left Raja Ampat on boat I watched the safety of our little hut on the water get further and further away. I was sad to be leaving and I had tears in my eyes. I was so grateful to have been able to be there at all. The way people in Indonesia seemed to be dealing with the Covid pandemic was so different than back at home, to where we were heading. Having been there almost two weeks I watched and listened in envy at how people were dealing with this situation. What I didn’t expect was to be on the side of the world with the most outbreaks and have it been surprisingly calm. There are many factors to that. A big factor is so much of what Americans consume is made here so the people here aren’t worried about running out of toilet paper. But it’s so much more than that and I think a lot of it has to do with the way people live their lives day to day. In Bali, the family and community are so important the idea of stock piling something while others go without seems insane, and it is by the way. People seem to be more connected not just to each other but to their religious beliefs as a part of them not something they experience outside themselves. Language barriers are no match for the eye contact and smiles so easily given. I grew up with so much more than most people have here (air conditioning for one) I don’t know that I could live the way many do here yet I envy them. It’s taken me my life so far to begin to understand something that seems so natural to many. Peace. Peace within. I was sad and happy and a dozen other emotions and I thought, I want this. I want all this. I want the good and the bad and happy and the suffering. I want to feel it all. It’s feeling all this that brings me closer. Closer to that feeling of oneness with everyone, with everything!
So that night in Raja during the crazy loud storm, I went back inside and I wrote this in case I died there I wanted my family and friends to know everything was ok.
I am grateful for the things I’ve learned. The recent awakening? If this is the end for me its ok. I can’t believe all the things I’ve learned and done and seen. The people I’ve met the feelings the love the sorrow. Every stinkin bit of it has been leading up to the next thing so I’m just gonna trust that this next thing is pretty fucking fantastic!