Friday, October 28, 2011

"What would you do?"

Subject:  What would you do?
Well! I am really here! The airline steward coming down the aisle warning people to cover their nose while he sprayed 4 cans of bug spray at the same time sealed it for me!  I guess coming through Bahrain airport with the women in traditional hijabs and men in thobes with smoking rooms and prayer rooms stationed frequently throughout the airport was a good indicator as well that I wasn’t in Kansas anymore! Soooo very exciting!  I missed Diwali, the festival of lights, by a day… but was able to catch the aftermath of the massive fireworks set off for the day. It was explained to me that Diwali is the celebration of good over evil and the firecrackers are set off to drive away evil spirits. Locals are all coughing for days after the festivities from all the smoke! But the city was beautifully lit up from the sky when I landed in Delhi.
I was very lucky to have 2 seats to myself on the plane to London, because A) It offered me the space to stretch out and rest and B) It provided me the opportunity to meet a new friend and remember the importance of cultural sensitivity when discussing matters of significance. The steward came to me and asked if a female passenger could join me because her husband was being quite belligerent…. In a brief amount of time she began discussing very personal matters about her husband’s behavior. She was tearing up telling me how she wasn’t sure why she was emoting with me because in her culture these things really weren’t discussed and that there was shame in being this expressive. As I assured her that it can often be more comfortable to share with a stranger than someone you know, she proposed that in her spiritual belief we all have god inside us and that perhaps the god in her was meant to meet the god in me.  She also described that in her culture divorce at her age (or any age for that matter) was really deplorable and life would be very hard for her if she decided to do this. She was planning on returning to India to connect with her spiritual community and family and friends to see if they could influence her husband’s behavior. “What would you do?” she asked. As I started to think of a therapeutic approach at reframing the question so that she would be in the position to answer it for herself… I decided she was really looking for a concrete answer…  so I said, that first off, she had to realize that my opinions come from a single white woman’s  westerner’s point of view and in no way could I ever really know the multiplicity of challenges she faced in making that decision… and a rich discussion ensued after this. In parting, she exclaimed, “a beautiful soul is leaving me now. I am very privileged to know you.” It is the beauty of these pleasantries that enhances my travel experiences and I am feeling extremely blessed to be initiating this journey in such a heart filled way.
Being picked up at the airport at a god awful hour and delivered to my friend Tobi’s apt is a treat beyond words as I try to acclimate from jet lag. Another wonderful blessing! So as you can see… magic is already happening.  Thanks for being a voyeur into this journey of mine… Hang tight! It has only just begun!!!!  On that note… if anyone would like to be taken off the group email list to inform you of postings… please let me know! 
Thanks for all your continued love and support!!!
PS. Please excuse any misuse of language or spelling mistakes especially given my sleep deprived smog filled brain at this time!
Big hugs! Jen


  1. So excited for you to finally arrive in India. What a great experience to emmerse yourself in such a beautiful culture. As you have already found out- you will grow not only by your adventures but spiritually as well. I always feel that to really visit a country you must not only explore the touristy landmarks but to live, speak, eat with the people of that country. This is when you get to know the real country. Stay safe, stay open and enjoy

    Chrissie (Rizzuto-Marinaccio)

  2. PS .. Immerse .. not emmerse .. I was typing too fast :)

  3. What an amazing connection to begin your journey with. NAMASTE!!

  4. What a powerful connection! You are God-filled and have a wonderful gift to share. Blessings to you!

  5. Wonderful story, Jen. The human connection is beautiful. I'm excited to hear more!! xoxo