Not only was I leaving the ashram on that Friday morning, but I was also leaving the state of Kerala where I had spent 4,5months of my trip. I knew I wouldn’t be coming back to this piece of paradise in Southern India for quite some time and then it suddenly became even more beautiful than it once was. Kerala; known as “God’s own country” and also “the land of the coconuts”. Kerala; so green, so luscious, so tropical, with the perfect climate. On the train I was enjoying hours and hours of beautiful sights and inspiring scenes of rural Indian life. It was all passing before my eyes, as I gazed out the window. At the same time, in my mind I was having visions of all the people I had met in these similar surroundings through the experiences I’d had.
The sun started to set and we slowly entered the drier parts of the south. The scenery was no longer to be seen, it was no longer familiar to me and it brought me little recognition in the darkness of the night. The train journey then takes on a different feel, as people start to curl up in their beds, that are barely 70cm wide. I slept so nicely in the bunkbed, even with the bumpy tracks, the screeching brakes and the general noise. All these sounds needed to be soothing - how else can a person sleep? I must have still been a little delirious from the flu, because I actually managed it. I managed to create a song out of the noise the train was making. I managed to feel fit and fine again, after 4 hours of being rocked like a baby and 4 hours chanting meditative songs over and over in my mind. I was so at ease with everything in the world, that I was floating.
This served me well, when I was in the chaos of Chennai only 20 hours after leaving a peaceful haven where people are embracing enlightenment through each and every action they undertake. I suddenly was on a bus, moving through Chennai, making my way to Jayanthi’s house - who I stayed with in March when I was here for a month. Due to the fact that I was still so chilled out and not bothered about anything, I took several wrong busses, I was placed from one to the other by the conductors, I was crossing highways, weaving in between traffic, tempted to hang out of busses that were overloaded and teased by the luxuries of private cabs. Eventually I was always brought to where I needed to be through pure determination, even with an attitude of not caring one bit about the haste and the chaos the was surrounding me. A journey from the station to Jayanthi’s house would usually take 45min. But it took me 2,5 hours. I could have wept, but instead I smiled - afterall I wasn’t bothered!! Thinking like this, can make life so stress-free. And being in a city is amazingly pleasant, freeing and magical when it can be experienced in this manner.
Coming back to Chennai, felt so natural, as did coming back to Jayanthi’s house. I walked into her family home, after the dogs greeting me, instead of trying to scare me away (like they did the first time I came here with my backpack weighing me down, all those months ago), I sat down, got offered an Indian Chai and I instantly knew I was where I wanted to be. The ease washed over me and I contently spent the first 2 full days, in a daze. There was no need for me to do anything. All I wanted was to process the past weeks and slowly get my head back to where it was needing to be - on this planet. Due to the flu I’d had and the change of environment, I was a little bit disconnected. But it was all fine. Sleep, rest and writing got my whole self feeling great again; and so eager to “embrace the city life” instead of “concur the city life“. Concurring is done only when something is a challenge. And this city is not going to be a challenge for me, it’s not the big deal it once was, 4 months ago. I will happily place myself within it and know I’ll deal with it easily. I’m here until Saturday. But will be sure to update real soon, as I only have 7 more days left in this amazing India. The suspense within me is rising, as each day passes.