I’ve learned since my last trip, Walking By Myself (with a really heavy suitcase).
This time my bag weighted 25 pounds instead of 50 and my carry-on was 7 pounds, not 20!
It’s not just the physical baggage that’s lighter. So is my heart.
After months of prepping for my new future, I’m finally living it. I’m certainly going into it with a light attitude. In the weeks before I left: toothache signals that I need a new crown, windstorm takes out the power, I have a parking lot fender bender, hot tub starts to malfunction? Oh well! Do what I can now, do the rest later.
On the way: can’t find the gate, flight delayed, pouring rain, can’t sleep on the plane? This will pass. I must admit, it was more challenging when my prearranged transfer to the hotel was not there, and I was almost two hours later than I expected reaching Jerusalem, meaning I had to cancel my meet up for a beer. But maybe we can work something out later. And, you know, I’m in Jerusalem. After 26 hours of non-stop travel, I am really enjoying my (solo) beer in the lobby bar!
What is not light is my willingness to connect with people. Just general chatting, like with a guy from Toronto on the sky train, with a German engineer who works for an Israeli company by the luggage carousel, with a Brit in an airport cafe who is also reading Yuval Harari’s latest book, with a grad student heading back to school who was intrigued by my yoga/energy routine preflight. Deeper conversations, as well: with a Croatian-Canadian-Greek about what the refugee situation feels like in her country; with a woman my age in a black hijab, heading to Turkey because, even after 30 years in Canada, her husband wanted to be buried in the country of his birth.
I’m ready. My mind and my heart are open. Now the brave travels truly begin.