After my whirlwind trip to Peru, including bus trips, planes, trains, deserts, oceans and many-layered beds, I was anxious to return to my place of rest, my sanctuary called home.
When you travel, coming home is the best part, and the hardest.
When you leave home, you are excited by what you are going to see and do. For me, I was excited to visit Cusco, Peru and meet Carmen Munoz of Centro Nanay, a centre which helps young girls who have graduated from local orphanages to re-assimilate into life.
I was also anxious to visit the far-flung villages in the mountains, and bring good cheer and broken Spanish, with lots of hugs to the children, and pet lamas and alpacas by lakeside market stands.
Before I went, I longed for adventure, transformation, inner purification and love. We experienced much of that: the bright lights of the Cusco nightlife, foreign and familiar foods, too many visits to the cash machine under local guard, and just faint touches of churches and monasteries; warm beds in a cold winter room staying with a local family…
Divine lights in the moon temple during meditation and angelic sounds; remnants of a lost civilization with entrances and exits neatly marked for a burgeoning crowd. There was nowhere that I truly “belonged”, for I was in someone else’s territory. Nothing in my blood carried the signal of fellow free man or slave, those who carried the weight of the world in Inca days.
There was no time to truly immerse, as we were on a mission to see all the sites, while also finishing our Yoga Teacher training program.
After all, I was a Canadian white girl, let’s face it. I knew very little Spanish, and I had a good if not naive heart. I engaged, I planted seeds, I travelled and then I longed for return – for there truly is no place like home.
Coming home was about the heart beckoning back why I left in the first place. Did I get what I was looking for? Did I return with answers, with a true heart, a mission to continue what I started, and to remember what I just faintly became aware of?
And more. I remembered my self – my true self, not the one I hoped for. Not the one that climbs rocks and trees and tries to prove herself, and wants different for different’s sake. But the one who appreciates what she has, and who she is, and who loves just the same.