Wow, what a difference a day makes. I’ve been feeling lost for a little while on this trip now. I could feel that I had gotten off the path but I didn’t know how to get back on. The answer to that dilemma seems to have been to drop Chuck off and go back to being on my own.
Not three hours after arriving, I received instructions to attend another festival along with a generous offer to attend for free. It seems that this woman couldn’t go and she had already budgeted for the event. So, after hearing about what I was doing, she offered to let me use her registration fees. So I am attending Spiral in Atlanta in three days. I had to call Mom to tell her that I wasn’t coming to see her yet (she wasn’t too happy although she said that she expected it). Angela, the woman who gave me her spot at Spiral, is also putting me up for the next two nights at her place just outside Cincinatti.
I hooked into the core group of presenters from the first moment I arrived and I got to hang out with really cool people who are at or beyond where I am on the spiritual level. I had a great series of conversations with Rob Dorsey, a Vibrational Healer. We talked about music, toning, and vibration and how they relate to energy work and the nature of the universe. I got to visit with Jampa, a Tibetan monk, who said that he would welcome me to stay with him in Dayton, OH sometime after he returns from his European trip teaching for the next three months. That would be really interesting and I will see if I can arrange that. I also was honored to have a long, private conversation with Karen, the coordinator of the event. She and I spent a lot of time discussing the darker side of the circle. She is doing croning work and I am working with grandmother spider on the hidden mysteries. We found that we have much in common and I have an invitation to stay with her in Cincinnati that I hope to be able to follow up on when I leave from Spiral. I finally feel like I am back on track.
We had an impromptu pot luck dinner at Sparky’s last night because I got back to my camp site to find it drenched. After adjusting the tarps again and finally shoving a long stick in the center to act as the central support, I got the drainage to work right. But I didn’t want to sit alone in the wet campchair and cook in the rain. So I grabbed my pasta, sauce and salad makings and headed to Sparky’s. Sparky is the guy who acts as the central meeting space and home for wayward/hungry campers. He promptly put the word out and within the hour we had 10-12 people gathered around the huge pots of pasta and sauce (veggie and meat variety sauces) that had materialized. We went to the hot tub after dinner and soothed out aching muscles (helped by a massage from Gawain in thanks for dinner). Then we headed back to Sparky’s to hang out and sip Tibetan tea that Jampa had given him. All around a relaxing evening filled with community and laughter.
In coming into the community of presenters in a non-threatening (to me) way, i.e. meeting at the campsite rather than at their workshops, I learned a valuable lesson. I have always desperately wanted to to be accepted by people whom I consider to be my peers or higher. Thus I have always tried to impress them with my knowledge so that they would accept me as being worthy to be in their presence. What I learned as I entered this space relaxed and unworried was that the best way to gain acceptance in a group of teachers is to be willing to sit and learn from them. The quality of my questions and comments implies my knowledge level and in far greater fashion than any amount of strutting and posturing ever could. This is something that I have known in my head for years, but I think I just managed to integrate it now.
So here I sit upon my wet camp chair with the dampness soaking through my jeans and shirt, listening to the (hopefully) last of the light patter of rain. I have packed out the majority of my camp site and I am just waiting for the mist to break in the hope that my tarps and tent will dry out before I have to pack them away for the 6 hour drive to Cincinnati. It is peaceful here because most of the small group of attendees went home yesterday. The tarps are wet, the tent is wet, my feet are bare leaving my wet sandals on the ground on either side of the the dry footstool I just dug out of the car this morning. I am wet, I am cold, I am wearing the same clothes I’ve been wearing for the last three days and I need a shower. I’ve never felt more in the flow of life and so connected with my path.
I am watching a chipmonk collecting the acorns that are perpetually falling from the trees, prepping his den for the coming winter. I am enjoying this brief moment of solitude and reflection. I am wondering what work I should be doing to prepare for winter. I’m really feeling the need to lighten my load of stuff I am carrying (on many levels and in the car), but there is little that I haven’t used and I can only remove the camping gear if I know that I won’t be camping anymore. I know that I’ll beheading south again eventually before going home, and you can camp there all winter (not that I really want to, mind you). If I let go of almost all of my creature comforts, I could get rid of a tub of stuff and my screen tent, that would free up a good bit of space, but I’m still carrying a ton of stuff anyway, so why bother? Besides, where would I leave it? When I left just one bag behind on the trip with Chuck, I regretted it on multiple occasions. Best to just deal with what I have.
I woke up at 7:30 this morning and since then I have made breakfast and packed about 2/3 of my camp. Then I journaled here. I have no idea what time it is now, but the mist is still heavy upon the land and it seems only slightly lighter even though I know several hours have passed.
One other noteworthy item. I have either been hallucinating due to lack of sleep or I am becoming more visually aware of the spiritual world around me. I am catching glimpses of things moving out of the corner of my eye but nothing is there when I turn to look at them. I am seeing movement directly in front of me which when I look more carefully is not anything physical. I’ll have to see how this progresses.
* This is part of an ongoing series of posts detailing what happened on a spiritual pilgrimage that I took in 2002. To start from the beginning, go to July 2, 2013. To see the entire journey as it gets published, click on the category “You Want Me To Do WHAT?!!?” to see all of the posts.