I am Jonesing for a trip right now but it is simply not in the cards this year. So in my stay -cation frustration I deliver to you, gentle readers, a tale from an unsolicited story I wrote about a trip I made to Spain. Yes, a boy of summer story for us middle aged gals out there who, despite best efforts, are single on these steamy sultry summer nights. So for your fantasy pleasure, ladies, I give you THE STORY OF THE YOUNGER MAN (which actually is about the zen inducing state of travel with a younger man element thrown in).
I will be posting this in installments so go make yourself some sangria (click for recipe here) and sit back and enjoy .
Imagine you are flying to Spain on this nice airplane>>
TRAVELING ZEN- One woman’s adventures in letting go
“I am much more comfortable staying put spiritually. If I allowed myself to travel, where might I go? I believe it involves the ability to put comfort aside, and boldly investigate new spiritual territory” SARK
The first time I read that quote while preparing for a trip to Spain, I missed the word, “spiritually” in the first sentence completely causing my mind to make a connection between physical travel and mystical travel. UNIVERSAL TRUTH THAT THE MIND FOLLOWS THE BODY AND VISE VERSE – “AMAZING THINGS HAPPEN WHEN YOU CONNECT THE BODY WITH THE MIND”
Traveling itself is an act of spiritual feeding. Daring to go into the unfamiliar and experience the unknown is brave. When we are in a strange place without a regular schedule, responsibilities or the normal accoutrements of daily living the focus of life changes. Acts that one takes for granted like how to turn on the water for a shower or unlock a door suddenly become important issues. One is forced to concentrate on the moment and mundane tasks which what “living in the moment” is all about. Living in the moment is a goal of many spiritual paths therefore traveling brings one a step closer to enlightenment through training of the mind to focus on the moment. When the mind stops it’s constant monologue of interruptive thought one is open to the power of the Universe to bring what one needs.
A pure example of this is a recent trip to Spain. I adore Spain. My hope is to someday live there. It is simply the most civilized society ever created. Spaniards know how to live. The Spanish wake early, do some work, come home in the middle of the day, consume a big meal and some time to relax, then maybe return to work and at ten at night are out eating tapas, spending time with their loved ones. They are relaxed. They speak from the heart. They appreciate beauty and design and the food is fabulous. The European mindset of using only what you need makes so much sense to me- I adore how the electricity goes out in your room when you are not there. I love how in a hotel you need a little plastic card to turn on your air-conditioning. I love how cities are built so people can walk everywhere. But my income level prohibits me from even visiting Spain much less moving there anytime in the foreseeable future so I usually just wax poetic about it to anyone who will listen and eat tap pas in a local restaurant when I can drowning my sorrows in pitchers of Sangria or the soft bubbles of a good flute of Cava. So it is easily understood why I became wickedly jealous of my young colleague, Ricardo, when he told me he was going to Barcelona to study Spanish for the summer. Ahh, to be young and without the obligations of spouse, house or children. What fun to have the ability and the parental bankroll to just go somewhere and learn something new and useful that will offer many life changing moments. He is living my dream. Then he did something that made my envious heart skip a beat. He leaned in close to my ear and in a low voice with smiling eyes said, “Why don’t you come visit?”
There are about 500 reasons why I should not go to Barcelona and visit Ricardo during his summer sojourn. Many of those reasons are mundane like where would the money come from to take such a trip just for fun? and how would I arrange childcare for my nine year old daughter? and do I have enough vacation time?, blah blah blah. Other reasons are ridiculous like what would people think of a 46 year old soon to be divorced woman flying across the ocean for a little visit with a 24 year old half Brazilian hotly of a man with a reputation for living La vida loca? And not least of all, what does he mean exactly by “come visit?” This statement is full enough of possibilities that simultaneously confound, flatter and terrify me.
WHAT WOULD YOU DO?
Tune in tomorrow to find out what happens next…