One year ago, I left the San Francisco Airport to make my way to Nepal. I began a 6-week journey to the country I’d dreamed of for over 20 years. Since I’ve returned from that trip, not a single day has passed without thoughts of Nepal floating through my head. I still wear a red string, tied around my wrist, given to me by the Buddhist Lama of the old monastery at Kagbeni. It is becoming frayed and I have often contemplated removing it but I haven’t been able to bring myself to take it off.
That 6 weeks in Nepal changed my life. I came home with a deeper appreciation for the simple things in life. The Nepalis taught me to slow down and to be a little friendlier. My attempts at speaking the language opened the door to sharing new friendships with the local people. I donated my time to a local NGO and also donated some nursing books to a government nursing school. Those simple actions gave me a sense of accomplishment that I don’t often feel here at home. The gratitude I received was empowering.
I can’t completely pinpoint why Nepal grabbed my heart so…
Was it the friendly, gracious people?
Was it the slow, simplistic lifestyle?
Was it the country’s deep connection to a spiritual life?
Or, was it the excitement of learning a new language & being immersed in a new culture?
I’m not sure although all were probably contributory. Have you been to a foreign country that has tugged at your heart? Feel free to share!