Submitted by Ben Ayers on Wed, 2008-10-15 09:52.
September 16, 2008
I guess I’ve made it. Packed, tied up the loose ends, changed my voicemail greeting, said my furry goodbye to the dog, put the last few boards up on the barn, and jumped a bus to the airport. I’ve passed immigration, checked in two massive bags without any excess baggage penalties, and now the endless wait ensues. The other side of the world is indeed a long ways away.
The stewardesses have such a strident sense of purpose, wheeling bags up and through the gate. Getting ready to prep the meals, to politely flop my head back out of the aisle, to pretend not to notice up the drool that will leak from the corner of my mouth like some faucet of boredom. The business types smooth their suits, order beers in the restaurant, carry their garment bags like towels on the beach. I suppose I cut the figure of some climbing bum in reform school, chipping away at my laptop. Over-caffeinated already and NEPAL bound. Back home. Away from home. The great split to begin again. The most important work of my life some twenty eight hours of quiet torture in small seats away – my opportunity to chip away at suffering and injustice, to adventure and to see, to help as I can. The most important individuals in my life long since home from the bus station, probably now walking through the back field as the sun sets – my wife, my dog. Chasing squirrels, behind them my shadow trails for two more cycles of the moon.
This is my fourteenth trip to Nepal, and I suppose all of the practice has made it somewhat easier to leave home. But it doesn’t change the fact that it’s still a drag to leave everyone I love here in the States. The same way it will certainly be two months from now when I say my final namastes in Nepal, when I make those last few phone calls from the shabby and cracked terminal, making plans for my return trip, hoping that somehow everyone there may need me even a fraction as much as I need them.