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Four You (A Mix Tape)

28 Sep

In India on the back of every truck you’ll find these words “Blow Horn!” And you know what, everybody blows their horn like it was going out of style.

You know I am a little bit of a coward. I mean it. Here’s what I mean, instead of coming out and voicing my feelings or thoughts…I write them up here. Oh, don’t know worry, I talk a lot. I get thoughts out there, ones that matter too. But the ones that could be rejected or viewed as unwelcome.

I put those up here. Kind of like an announcement board. And then I cross my fingers, my toes, my eyes, legs…and pray that the person who it’s meant for will read it and feel inspired, or know that I care. Perhaps it’s that I feel I’m the only one on in each specific relationship who senses the overbearing need to Say Anything (that’s a movie isn’t it?). You ever feel that way? Of course you do, if you’re writing a blog well that’s clue number one. Don’t worry, there’s no need for shame, at least you’re saying something. If you’ve read  earlier posts you’ll know that I’m not a fan of bottling things up. Dumb.

I’ma “Blow my Horn” ~these are for four different unrelated people I’ve met in life.

1. I don’t know how many times I have to tell you “You’re beautiful, you’ve overwhelming because you’re so wonderful and you shine so bright!” I don’t care either, I’ll be here to tell you. Let me tell you. Listen to me tell you.  If it weren’t the truth; I wouldn’t say it. Do I have to go so far as to name names? I don’t think so. You know who you are. Just start believing it, because it’s the truth. Man, I wish you would just believe it.

 

2. I don’t know if you’re reading these posts of mine. Maybe I’m too much of a romantic. Maybe I stifled what could have been a beautiful friendship and something more. Maybe I’m the only one who felt that way. You want the truth?  Ah yes, well, its only because I thought I was the only one who felt that way. I wish I had let myself love you. So I wrote you off. And for that I’m sorry. Haha, you might not even know it’s you I’m talking about. But I think it’s too late to change any of that…isn’t it? Do you know who you are?

 

3. Are you reading this? I gave you the opportunity to take the honorable option. And you took the wrong one. How could you take advantage of me like that? Wasn’t I kind and generous to you? Wasn’t I your friend? I don’t understand. I trusted you too much and you ripped away just a bit more of my trust from humanity. I never should have trusted you. You should know who you are. Step up and take responsibility for your actions. You broke my proverbial heart

 

4. I know you’re not reading this. You. There is no way. You’re illiterate. For you there aren’t any words, only names. Bad names. And I refuse to write them up here. You know who you are, but you’ll never hear anything from me.

 

Would you pick different songs? Of course you would, there are so many out there, but then this post would only be music videos. Aren’t they simply fun though? The images make you think and the words make you ponder. Of course life is not like a music video, but who ever put a ban on living like you’re in one? No one.

I’m not trying to escape reality, simply just trying to find another way to embrace it. And there. You have it now. I’m a closet coward. And if these four people were to walk into the room right this moment, would I say anything?

Hmmmm…

Going Through Something…

24 Sep
Travel problem

WordPress says that to increase “readership” I should include visuals…I didn’t know what would suit what I’ve written here. So I think this is appropriate.

So remember how I went to India? Well while I was there, I met a guru. He grew up in Canada and helped people for free. Despite his arrogant demeanour and sour smile, what he said was ever so honest. Of course he told me that I need to love myself more, and let my heart love more easily. “Go for it” he said. Ah yes of course. Go for it. Here’s my first attempt at simple plain honesty. And if you read this and feel moved…then don’t just nod your head…make a change. Do something.

Imma go for it:

There is no room in my life for an ego your size. It’s really all about silly pride isn’t it? Dumb, heavy, overbearing and useless. I’m fed up with it and you know the funny thing is…I desperately want to get to know who you are. But you’ve built up these proverbial walls so high, and even when I jump to peek over the top; I’m barely scratching the surface.  Am I making sense?

No? Let me break it down for you. This is what I’ve learned in my short span of what I can scarcely call a life. I’ve learned that hidding your sh**t does nothing for you. It only barricades you from the rest of the world. You (general) think that because you’re hiding it all, it makes you a deep individual? You think you’re the only one? Yes you’re the only one who’s “going though something”?

No! It is harder to deal with the thoughts of other people. When you keep your issues bottled up, your thoughts will twist and turn around in that head of yours and before you know it, a tiny issue becomes a catastrophe. So what in the world are you waiting for? I’m dying to get to know you! I’m begging to understand who you are.

WHO ARE YOU?

Don’t slap on a smile and nod at me. We’re adults aren’t we? The time to play “pretend” has come and gone. We can skip the small talk too, I don’t wanna to hear it. Lay it all out there for me, and watch me be someone who actually cares and will put my best foot forward to show you that I care. I really do care. I’m not telling you to forget and move on. No, take it with you, let it become part of what makes you an interesting character. But let it stop at that. Get over it.It isn’t your life, it isn’t what makes or breaks you. Just saying. 

But go ahead and keep it all inside your head. And I’ll watch you suffer, offer a way out and listen to your refusal. Soon I’ll stop asking all-together and then guess what you’ll come to me wondering if I have time to “talk”. Will I? Of course. I’ll have waited for what seems like forever. I just needed to wait for you to come around and learn for yourself. And maybe it will be sweeter and more worthwhile and I’ll have learned more by that time too. Who knows?

Uncovering Needed Beauty

19 Sep
Fishing boat, Koh Samui, Thailand

Fishing boat, Koh Samui, Thailand (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Recently went for a little travel. Down to the lovely Thailand and lovely (more or less) India. I thought I’d look for beauty in completely opposite countries. Both are a culture shock.

There is a constant bubble of sound that seems to follow you wherever you go in India. Sometimes it felt as if I couldn’t turn around without someone staring, touching, yelling, crying…anything really. There is no such thing as personal space only the relentless look of derision and judgment at having white skin. To the people on the street; white skin means money and stupidity. Street vendors, tuk-tuk drivers, “guides”, are automatically allowed an attempt at cheating you, you’ve risked coming here and what happens in India, stays in India.

Great.

But what am I saying? That all of my experiences there were on the negative side of the spectrum of perception? Not in the slightest. It simply became more of a challenge to discover the “beautiful.” In many countries they put their lovely aspects on display, not India, nothing is hidden. It’s all there for you to see, and that is why you should go, because it helps you realize that there is power in having to work at loving something. Let me tell you that while I loved Thailand, I loved India more, simply because I had to toil to love it. Thailand laid all of its beauty out there for me to see, India hid it from me and I was on a hunt to find it. And I did.

Take a breath, the next bit will be a tad cliché.

Dear India. I found its beauty in the holy towns where women washed in the brown waters that met the steps. It was in the smiling faces of those children in the school at the Jaisiyaram Ashram. In the smiles of the happy Ashram workers; they’re always singing, laughing at something. Beauty and love in the kiss that Nanniji lay upon my forehead when I left the Ashram. “Goodbye,” she said and smiled.

There was beauty in the way that families are so connected there, just a tight support group. In the face of Ankit, a little boy who stated decisively “I will be the Leader of India, and clean it up.” I saw a beautiful monkey, who then stole my crackers and stared at me defiantly, challenging me to take them back. I threw my head back and laughed.

Where else? Let me tell you.

In the forts and temples, the mosques. But of course that is a given.

I saw it in the priest who blessed me in the name of Krishna, and then demanded a donation. When I cried in frustration at his incessant urges, he fell over, almost landing in the mucky water that is called “holy”. He said, “Now see, you are crying and I fell over. Everything is connected.” I gave him some money. Yes there was beauty in that. Its small but it’s there. Oh! I saw it in the family I stayed with in Varanasi. How the father adored his mother, and loved his children, he was a lighthearted fellow, very quick to help and tell a joke. I saw beauty in the willingness of our driver, Lucky, (who doesn’t earn much), to give twenty rupees here and there to the children who pleaded to him with hungry eyes. He put me to shame, and there is small beauty in shame; it reminds me of my humanity.

Need I go on?

The beauty I discovered in Thailand, was precious, albeit at times more superficial. I stayed on an island, in a bungalow. Met a beautiful Chinese woman named Eva. She’d grown up in Italy and had an Italian accent. In fact the only thing Chinese about her was her appearance. But she smoked and drank like tomorrow didn’t matter. I’ve never met someone so free and uncaring. There was beauty in that. Before I left she said to me “Tricia you are only here for one night. I just met you, but I know you like to talk, and I know you like to live.”

“Thank you Eva.”

I saw beauty in Bangkok, in the different markets, the different senses of “need”. There, the rush is not a rush, but an ambling sense of the word “go”. what I mean is that, stress doesn’t seem to exist here in the outskirts of Bangkok. The same goes for India, there is a relaxed atmosphere despite the noise. There was beauty in what I call the “train market”, a market set on the train tracks. 10 times a day they move their produce and fresh meats from the track to make way for the train. But when the train comes, it’s not a big deal, it rolls through at a slow lull of a pace. Everyone is relaxed and calm. Nothing to see here.

Where was I?

Right, beauty. There was beauty in Thailand, in the elderly woman with leathery creases in her face, when she gave me this tiny apple-star fruit. She smiled a toothless smile and made a motion to eat it with her leathery hands. Ah such a precious sight. Perhaps I didn’t have to look as hard in Thailand. Oh well, beauty is beauty.

I have written that word quite a bit. And if you don’t know what I’m talking about, well, read it again and tell me which words seems to appear in each paragraph or sentence. After you do that, tell me how hard you search for it wherever you are. Because I can guarantee that if you’re depressed/angry, and you challenge yourself to search for it. Your outlook and attitude are sure to change.

Recently went for a bit of travel. Down to the lovely Thailand, and the lovely (more or less) India. And while I was there I sought out beauty.

…expectations

25 Aug

I thought that when I had started this trip I would have been inspired to write tons and perceive insight from everything that I have learned so far. But as it is I am too caught up in the moments to stop and write something down.
Silly me, as a writer I should have already learnt to set aside time for the day to look back and reflect or think about something…anything. But alas I have not, my mind and soul are to free to stick to any regiment. Or perhaps I am just forgetful…perhaps that is the actual cause.
But here is what I have discovered about myself do far on this trip. That I need to calm down. Almost everyone I have met has told me that I’m a little uptight and need to let loose. Then I think to myself that of course I’m letting loose. Aren’t I here on this trip, learning and freeing my mind? But then to some people I am the over planner. I know exactly at what time things need to be done and at exactly what time I need to be somewhere.
I know my mother at this point would say, “There is nothing wrong with that.” and of course there isn’t but there is something wrong in not letting yourself go with a flow and see what happens. You never know who you will meet in your travels.

Staying at Jaisiyaram in Vrindavan…

I just finished having dinner at the ashram and it was delicious and silent too for that matter, because we were all busy eating.
The boys (various boys from families too poor to support them), sat in silence also at the other end of the table. Every once in a while I look over and smile at them and they smile back and shyly look down at their plates. They live here and go to school here, their life is here. And they are so excited by the simple things in life that it shakes my senses and almost stirs me to tears.

Yesterday I sat beside Naniji, and with my handy-dandy iPad asked her how she was that day. Well there must have been a mistake because when her grandson came to translate, she said to him “How can I tell her that I am 90+ years old?”
My foolish mistake in accidentally asking her how old she was…of course she was not embarrassed, but I was. But she lovingly patted my back and shook her head as if to say nothing shocked her anymore in this life.

What else have I learned here in this journey?

1. I’ve learned that no matter how hard you try you meet people, amazing people. They’re everywhere and are so ready to meet you and get to know you.
2. I’ve learned that fear and regret are only as big as you let them get, and no matter what the world spins and life goes on. So forget about fear and regret…move on with life and live it.
3. I’ve learned that even in the most chaotic places (like India) there is a rhyme and there is a reason, I’m just too foreign to see it.
4. Stress, when it plagues you…is obviously never a good thing~ duh.
5. Sing and smile while you work, it makes it more enjoyable even in the nastiest jobs. There is a man at the ashram who is always smiling, they call him Baboo (spelling). He serves our meals, and anyways, he is always quite the happy camper.
6. Be down. And by this I don’t mean on the ground…I mean be up for anything. Someone wants to try something new? Don’t say no, say yes and see what adventure you might have. You never know what will happen.

Hmmm that’s all I can think of thus far, but I will keep the list running, keep the thoughts flowing, and all that jazz. But until I do, here’s cheers from me in India 🙂

Jaisiyaram

Barefoot in Beijing: 没有鞋子在北京北京

10 Jul
An SVG map of China with Beijing municipality ...

An SVG map of China with Beijing municipality highlighted Legend: Image:China map legend.png (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

English: Montage of various Beijing images

English: Montage of various Beijing images (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Not only that but caught in the rain; walking in what you think is the correct direction…only to find that indeed its the wrong direction. Whoopsidaisy.

Although you have to admit that walking in the rain gives you a sense of reality. You’re suddenly brought to grips with life and taken out of the fantasy to realize: life its happening now. Its time to stop waiting for it to “start” and realize what you’ve got is your life, you’re living it now! I’m not trying to be prophetic, just stating what I consider to be truth.

Okay so, I went for dinner with some friends, and went home early. Tried to go home early. Caught the subway, and got off to transfer only to realize that the next line I needed to use was under construction and therefore closed. Lucky me.

“No problem,” I thought, “I’ll take a taxi home, only 10 kuai.”

I walked outside, ambitious and independent. I felt a drip on my arm and instantly roll my eyes, because that means…a huge downpour is about to ensue. Great. Sure enough, down comes the rain. And what’s more, there wasn’t a taxi to be found. So I start walking, I was determined now you see.

It turned out that my determination was all for naught. I was walking in the wrong direction. Go me! Yes, so I turn back around and by this time my feet are a little bit bloody, as I’m wearing some new shoes and wanted to break them in. A thought entered my head that I could just take off my shoes and walk without them. But then that would mean I would be walking barefoot in Beijing, and who knows what I’d walk in…who cares? My feet were incredibly sore. So sore.

Off came the shoes and I walked for a good two kilometers home, in the rain, in Beijing. And this is not the only time that its happened sure enough the next night I was walking home from a movie (which was entirely in Chinese, and I am pleased to say that I understood much of it), when what do you know? Yep, the rain. That dear old rain came down like there would never be another day in the span of time.

I’m not a complete loss, so I pull out my umbrella and continue to walk. Thanks to the umbrella, my head remains dry and so do my shoulders. But my legs and feet are soaking wet, soaking wet.

The second time around that I was walking home, in the rain. I’m so blessed. But then as I said walking in the rain gives you a chance to think about reality. Rain has a way of dampening the heat, wakening the senses and let you really see whats what, and what isn’t. Sometimes I’m struck by reality as it were, quite struck.

Simple things like realizing, I’m actually living in Beijing. Or I’m 23 years old. Or that I have three sisters. Yes, they’re all simple things, but they’re things that I forget quite often these little truths about my life, and about the lives about others.

On those two walks home I remembered the reality that people really at the beginning of their lives each day. They decide what they will do each morning, each day you can be a different person, learn from who you were the day before and better yourself for the day before you.

hmmm…so much to think about.

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