While visiting one of my favorite blogs called, Life, the Universe and Lani this post created sparks in the dormant storyteller part of my wee brain.
Lani is a teacher/writer and author that lives in Chiang Mai and often gives tips on poetry and writing along with loads of very useful information about the area. In this post she speaks of lists and going beyond the generic ones we create every day, like groceries, to do and packing. I am especially drawn to her suggestions for, Creating a 10 Line Story, Making a List of Nice Things to Remember Me By and The Way Things Make You Feel.
At this moment in time we have 293 day till we permanently arrive in Chiang Mai and I am not quite sure what is going on with my emotions! Work is just status quo and it is becoming harder and harder to put a smile on my face as I watch chaos, dysfunction, greed, abuse, harassment, ignorance, bigotry, racism and prejudice be systematically ignored by some and encouraged by others. Many years ago I saw a button that said, “All Bigots and Racists will be re-incarnated as gay homeless people of color” I think that applies here. You might think we live in the deep south or the mid-west part of the US….but nooooo! We have lived in Eugene, Oregon for 13 years. It is a large, supposedly progressive, modern city and at it’s core is the University of Oregon.
I have to remind myself that the University was founded by men belonging to the KKK and that the large statue of “Pioneer Father” located in the main area of campus is not carrying a whip for his livestock! I feel as if I am living in an alternate timeline, I am saddened and my heart hurts. I don’t belong here any longer. It is kind of like a Stephen King novel where the people I have worked with for 7 years are changing right before my eyes. The novel comes with a song……..Smiling Faces
So….I as I shut down and cocoon myself in my cubicle I surround myself with pictures of Thich Nhat Hahn and his quotes. “Go as a river” “Be Beautiful, Be Yourself” “We are all watering seeds” and my favorite…..”No Mud, No Lotus”
I also have special pieces of kitsch on my desk which comforts me. A Shishimai Lion I picked up in Uchiko, Japan when I visited our son and daughter in-law. Once a year men of the village dress as the Lion to visit homes and businesses to rid them of evil spirits and bestow good fortune for the coming year. I am proud to say our son has donned the Lion many times and my small Shishimai Lion makes me feel that he is protecting me from afar. Shishimai Lion Dance
I have two small Buddhas carved from stone and three small stone elephants. A large single point quartz crystal that is 7 inches high and weighs about 4 lbs and a gold gilded Washi Paper card sent to me by my beautiful daughter in-law along with many charms from Buddhist temples we visited in Japan. I am surrounded by the energy of my distant family.
As you can see I am feeling very emotional and hope to breathe through it as I watch it transform me. It is a quiet, contemplative protective space I find myself. Like being wrapped snugly in a soft cozy warm blanket, nothing is sticking out, not even my nose. It is a safe darkness where things germinate, gestate and become. I just don’t know yet what that will be.
I have glimpses sometimes when I least expect it. Something will strike my funny bone and I will erupt into laughter where tears start to form in my eyes and I look around to see faces of scorn and ridicule…..I wish people could be happier.