Mark’s posting, with his references to Dorothy in the Wizard of Oz, had me chuckling at the oddest moments. Yet the thought of saying au revoir to my family, albeit for no more than six to eight weeks, is causing me a certain amount of anxiety. My two older children are at college and will hardly notice that I am gone. For who can tell where an email comes from?
But what about my husband and Robert, my youngest? I know that they will miss me. But will they also get used to doing things without me? And when I return, (yes Mark, I will return) will we have to get used to one another again?
After all, I will come back after having spent weeks eating vegetarian food, sharing the floor and communal bathrooms with other like minded pilgrims. I will have meditated near rivers and in open fields in the presence of my Guru, who is the embodiment of love. Where I am going, there will be no room for camouflage. Exposed to myself, I will have the chance to find out who I am, and that is who I want to be. As well as a wife and a mother.
And here is where I want to say Thank you to my husband and my children, not only for supporting me in this “project,” but also for actively helping me with the preparations.
As for the cat, well, she is doing her usual thing: finding herself on the wrong side of the door on a regular basis, asking for food and sleeping on my bed. When I’m gone, there will be one less person for her to trick into thinking that she has not been fed yet. So, maybe she will miss me.
Tomorrow I am going to the Indian Consulate in Manhattan to apply for my visa. Hugh – my husband – downloaded the forms online and helped me fill them out. Once I have the visa, I can book my flight as soon as the dates for the North Indian Tour are announced. I can’t wait! And I have butterflies in my stomach.
Ok, here is my updated wish list :
Air tickets for my husband and three children to join me in Calcutta at the end of the tour. Richard, I’m still hoping for you to come through here.
Digital camera and memory card
Therm-a-rest inflatable mattress – Nancy is giving me hers. Thank you Nancy!
A literary agent who will find a publisher for my book
A set of spiral notebooks
Oh, I love the pens that Virgin gives out on their flights and since I will not bring my laptop with me, I would like a few of those pens to write with.
A bedroll sack – It will be strapped on the bus’s roof top together with the luggage Mary from my office is coming up with it, thank you Mary.
A good backpack to carry some of the items on this list – Mary again.
An asana – something to sit on outdoors – Cheers Bob, will you be needing it back?
Dust mask – for road travel
Earplugs – to block out others’ snoring when sharing a floor with fellow travelers
Flashlight-to avoid tripping over them on my way to the bathroom –Nancy, thank you for shedding some light.
Mosquito repellent – self-explanatory
Eye mask – Got it
And to start with I have three white Panjaby sets to wear
Oh yes, an inflatable neck pillow would be really nice – Jamie thank you!