As I lie here and write, the sounds of the night drift in through my open shutters; the cascade of water from the fountain across the road; the rumble of traffic and the rattle of passing trains; undulating mixed voices from a distant party; the deep babble of an Irishman’s distinct tongue as he walks by; the cicadas chorus now silent as the rain falls rhythmically slapping the road and a corrugated iron veranda as thunder roars in intermittent ripples.
The freshly bloomed roses have wilted, the perimeter of each peach petal singed toast brown by yesterday’s ferocious sun. Summer has arrived in Melbourne. Yesterday was the second last day of Spring and the mercury hit 39.2 degrees Celsius. Although today was cooler our house is still hot so right now I have the window open fully, allowing the cooler night air to mingle and hopefully conquer the warmth of my room.
This was a week of reunion and reminders.
Wednesday night was the full moon, a time of beginnings and endings and even epiphanies. In Thailand, it was also Loi Kratong, my favourite festival celebrated by floating small crafts (kratong) made of banana leaves carrying lit candles, flowers, incense, coins and maybe some hair or nail clippings on a river, lake or sea. This was my first Loi Kratong outside of Thailand in three years and although I missed being there, I carry with me the memories and energies of ones past.
Coincidentally (or maybe not so coincidentally) Wednesday was also the night of my former employer’s staff reunion party. It has been four years since I left and embarked on my year of change that extended into four years of change and what I come to accept now is the passage of my life, always changing. I have not seen the majority of my past colleagues, including my managers since I departed. Of an organization that technically no longer exists (it has merged with one bigger), around 70 former colleagues attended, an incredible turnout and night filled with nostalgia, joy and for me, timely reminders.
I was reminded, that all sorts of people can come together to create something special; that although it might not last forever it lasts in the hearts of those who remember; and that there are corporations who profit through serving their customers' needs honestly and with integrity.
Most importantly, I was reminded of what it feels like to be passionately driven, that energy deep within my belly that drives me to act when I truly believe in something. This reminder, this sense of drive is important right now as I continue to recalibrate my life’s direction and decide how I want to be of service.
My heart-led life requires the drive of an engine. It’s still there, in neutral, longing and waiting, sometimes impatiently, to jump into first gear.
This year has been one of standing still. Outwardly, nothing much has changed but inside, where no one else can see, everything has changed. I have dug deep into the darkness and pulled back each layer that has hidden my bruised heart to discover a beautiful, clear light that aches to shine and guide the way, if I will allow it.
Right now, I am sitting with the question, what does service feel like? I am feeling my way along the path, into my future.
Vision is coming. The engine is running. Traction is not far away.
|Kratong on Naiharn Lake, Loi Kratong, Phuket, Thailand|
|People floating kratongs on Naiharn Lake, Loi Kratong, Phuket, Thailand|
|Lighting a lucky lantern during Loi Kratong, Phuket, Thailand|