not all who wander are lost.

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Memorial Day Madness

...And so another summer in South Jersey begins! My many odd jobs remain the same {more or less} : waitressing (but at a new restaurant, Sunset Pier), teaching yoga (just a lot more than the previous 3 beach classes), singing (at the same 3 spots: Dead Dog, Buschs and Stone Harbor Golf Club), personal catering (for the same wonderful family), Thai Massage, and freelance graphic design. I've removed cleaning houses from the repertoire, because quite frankly it sucks. The money is good, but it drains my energy and my soul!! So that's how I've been able to add in several more classes. Honestly: this was the longest, most painful Memorial Day weekend that I can remember. All of my jobs were great, and I love Sunset Pier, but this was the first summer that I've gone into after a winter at home. Usually I fly home the DAY BEFORE Memorial Day Weekend from wherever I was overseas, and I hit the ground running. I'm excited to work, excited to be home, and excited to replenish my funds (because at this point I already have the next travels planned, and only have to be home for 4 months before jetting off again). A long winter home, and no promise of spending next winter away...well, I just didn't have the same 'umph' that I usually have going into the start of summer. All throughout the weekend I had customers at the restaurant ask me what school I go to, because clearly anyone who waitresses must be a student right?? {I am a pretty easygoing person, but this question really irks me!!}. When I tell them that this is my life: work work work work for four months and then plaaaaaayyyyyyy, the response is always the same: "Well, what do you DO when you travel?". I believe that this is what's wrong with most travelers, particularly with American travelers. They always have to go for someTHING, or someONE, to experience a certain place or sight. I can't really tell you what it is that I do, because when I'm traveling I just am. I just relax into the present moment, enjoy my present company, and just take each day as it comes with all that is has to offer. I can describe my travel experience as satori...

A story about SATORI:
When I was reading OSHO's "Tantra" last night he told an anecdote about Satori that I really would love to share. It's long, but it is a beautiful story that I hope you read, digest and enjoy:

In my childhood I used to go early in the morning to the river. It is a small village. The river is very, very laxy, as if not flowing at all, and in the morning when the sun has not yet arisen, you cannot see whether it is flowing, it is so lazy and silent. In the morning when there is nobody - the bathers have not come yet - it is tremendously silent. Even the birds are not singing, in the early morning, no sound, just a soundlessness pervades. And the smell of the mango trees hangs all over the river. 

I used to go there, to the furthest corner of the river, just to sit, just to be there. There was no need to do anything, just being there was enough; it was such a beautiful experience to be there. I would take a bath, I would swim, and when the sun rose I would go to the other shore, to the vast expanse of sand, and dry myself there under the sun, and lie there and sometimes even go to sleep. 

When I came back, my mother used to ask, "What have you been doing the whole morning?" I would say "Nothing", because, actually, I had not been doing anything. And she would say, "How is it possible? For hours you have not been here, how is it possible that you have not been doing anything? You must have been doing something." And she was right, but also I was not wrong.

I was not doing anything at all. I was just there being with the river, not doing anything, allowing things to happen. If I felt like swimming - remember if I felt like swimming - I would swim , but it was not a doing on my part, I was not forcing anything. If I felt like going into sleep, I would go. Things were happening, but there was no doer. And my first experiences of satori started near the river; not doing anything, simply being there, millions of things happened. 

But she would insist, "You must have been doing something." So I would say, "Okay, I took a bath and dried myself in the sun," and then she was satisfied. But I was not, because what happened there in the river is not expressed by the words I took a bath; it looks so poor and pale. Playing with the river, floating in the river, swimming in the river, was such a deep experience. To simply say, "I took a bath" makes no sense, or just to say "I went there, had a walk on the bank, sat there.", conveys nothing at all. 

If whatsoever you have been living can be conveyed by words, that means you have no lived at all. 

And so SATORI is my state of being when I travel. Every day is magical and can't really be expressed in words, or else it would sound like nothing at all. But for all of those customers that need an answer, I tell them I jumped off a waterfall, or swam in a lake, or ate some exotic food. And they smile at me, sometimes in awe or jealousy or confusion, and I smile to myself because I know how wonderful the moment truly was. 

Coffee. A proper, delicious, hand crafted, strong cup of coffee. Hallelujah. 
Was super grateful to spend the morning with my Dad today while he enjoyed his breakfast
Put the cap on my truck today so I can store all of the necessities for my 20 jobs....
Putzing in the garden. 

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