What did I get myself into? How did I end up here? Providence, Rhode Island. Brown. Reoccurring thoughts cart-wheel through my busy mind as I kick up crispy orange/yellow leaves scattered about the old New England campus. The truth is – it’s hard. I’m struggling. When I’m having a hard time, I don’t write. Because what if you knew that I doubted myself? That I questioned if I’m smart enough and capable enough to be here? Maybe I am if I believe I am. Some days I do and others I don’t, but I show up anyway. Continue reading “I Think I Can”
Vipassana – to see things as they really are.
I sit on a cushion in a low lit room with my eyes closed. My whole body tingles and I am weightless, completely unaware of the outside world, and even the other 30 something people sitting around me. What am I feeling? Change. Everything changes, constantly. I feel the particles my body is made up of change every second, my thoughts change, my feelings change. Non attachment and equanimity is what I’m seeking. Equanimity with every sensation I feel, not attaching to it, not avoiding it. Continue reading “Vipassana”
Yes, I know, I stopped writing. I’ve started countless posts that I’ve abandoned halfway through. I went to Greece with the passionate intention to write about my experience, it’s just that, I’m not sure how to verbalize it, how to share it. I arrived in Leros and jumped into an exciting, emotional, overwhelming, and sad tornado that consumed me until the moment I boarded a tiny plane back to Athens. It’s taken me a few weeks of aimlessly wandering around Europe to sort it all out. Continue reading “Silence”
Barbed wire. Fences and barbed wire. A cement court surrounded by high fences and barbed wire. A policed metal gate opens up to gravel, concrete, metal containers and barbed wire. A military truck dumps crates of bread on the slab of concrete surrounded by barbed wire – breakfast. Children run around on the gravel, playing on rocks in the confined, fenced in camp. All I see is barbed wire. Surely this is a prison. No? A refugee camp you call it. Hotspot, a prison to some – Syrians, Kurds, Palestinians, Iranians, Pakistanis a refugee camp to others. Continue reading “Hotspot”
Sunday morning I wake up with a busy mind and a desire to get lost. I grab a cappuccino freddo and set out on foot towards a distant castle, somewhere on the island. Dodging motorbikes, I ascend a road along the edge of a cliff, looking down at the maze of houses below, stretching out to the ocean. Indeed I get lost, looking for a path that will lead me to the castle. After making countless wrong turns, I realize the path I’m looking for isn’t a road, but a narrow staircase pathway. What seemingly is an entrance to a house is really a secret stairway leading to a quaint village on a beach. Continue reading “Queen of the Castle”
Seemingly, everyone I’ve met since landing in Athens has an opinion about the refugee crisis in Greece – locals, Uber drivers, NGO’s, police, and refugees themselves. Opinions are freely shared with me once I disclose what I’m doing here (teaching yoga in a refugee camp) and I listen, hesitating to form an opinion until I’ve had my own experience on the island of Leros, my home for the next month or so. Continue reading “POC, Refugee, Resident”
My midwestern friendliness betrays me sometimes. I’m sitting at dinner in Zim with my nomad family, watching a group of guys wearing beads & animal print cloths dance, when I’m pretty sure one of them (the falsetto) points directly at me. Uhh, I naturally smile in response (was he pointing at me?) but I do not get a smile in return- instead he walks over and crowns me with a Springbok headdress. What just happened? I’m not quite sure what to do, so I sit there awkwardly for what feels like forever (maybe 5 minutes), until someone tells me I’m supposed to get up and dance with him. Continue reading “Hats Off, Zimbabwe”