It’s in the moment of goodbye I am assaulted by the depth of my bonds. I held my mother in what would be the last opportunity for months – emotions washed over me. There was gratitude for the time we spent together, sadness to be moving away from her, and fear in leaving behind the comfort of a peaceful place and transitioning into the unknown. Tears streamed down my face.
I had variations of this emotional goodbye with my sister, father, brother in law, nieces, work mates, and chess friends. I’m grateful to have relationships that elicit these deep responses. It feels so good to feel – even when that feeling is sadness.
For over a week I pleaded with the Indian Embassy to process my visa and send back my passport, receiving only robotic answers and feeble placations. In a final hour miracle, my passport arrived on my doorstep. I take this as a good omen. Everything is going to be just fine – even if just barely.
I’m hopping back on my bicycle, riding from Nepal to Thailand. I’ll ride through India, Burma, Cambodia, Laos, and Vietnam in the meantime. I will share my stories along the way. I’m sure there will be stories.
The sun is rising on this new journey. I’m ready for the day.