I didn't have direct career ambitions, per se, but moreover I just wanted to travel everywhere and to experience everything. Or, to put it differently, I wanted to create and I wanted to travel. The priorities changed often about which held more sway.
Then I became a parent early. Then I decided to finish college. Then I couldn't afford travel. For awhile I had a job that allowed me to travel frequently, but then I got a better job. And, that job has kept me stationary for years now. A myriad of reasons, all of the them decent, for why I hadn't traveled like I'd imagined I would when I was younger. And, each stage has been worth it for the different lessons they brought me.
2015 brought more travel than ever.
Chile, Israel, with two road trips to California in between. Even with all my childhood dreams of traveling, I never imagined Chile nor Israel. And, the funny thing is that I hadn't explicitly tried to go to either place.
It is more that, well, they just happened. After years of traveling inside my head, the outer adventures showed up and I was in a place where I could appreciate them.
In February, we went to Chile. Specifically, we visited the biomagnetic center of the world. An obscure valley, known for its starry skies and observatories. Literally, we went to see the stars and the planets; and in the process also saw eagles, donkeys, scorpions, grapes, foxes, and cactus flowers. In the process, I learned of a long-running confluence of the planet Venus with Saturn and Jupiter; and found parallels in the myth of God (Saturn) entrusting the earth to Adam (Jupiter) and Eve (Venus) as they dip from the stars to the land off in the distant horizon. The valley felt so peaceful I thought I could stay there forever. Truly, it felt like a center worth experiencing.
Then in October I received a fellowship to travel to Israel for ten days in November in order to attend the Association of European Jewish Museums conference at the Israel Museum. An undreamed dream come true! I can't say that the trip came to me out of the blue, but it did come to me while I was in a neutral state of not-expecting.
I had a day and a half before Shabbat to visit the Old City. That's not much time but every moment felt like a true gift. This tends to stretch minutes into a world of enough time.
Somehow, while standing in what I thought was the line to visit the Western Wall (which was the only thing on my 'itinerary' for my first day) I ended up in line to visit the Temple Mount, which is the area where Jews and non-Muslims are restricted from visiting. What happened was that I had been going with the flow of people and was sandwiched between two Christian tour groups and when I finally thought to ask another person in line why our particular line for the Western Wall was going so slow when the others were moving much faster, they said, "Oh, this isn't a line for the Wall. We're going up to the Temple Mount." But, by that time I'd invested so much time I figured I'd stick with it. And, of course, I'm glad I did because I had been feeling all along that I'd wanted to see the Al Aqsa mosque but had resigned myself that it just wasn't an option for me because of the politics happening now in a civil war that isn't my fight to begin with.
Anyway, I got to see the mosque! Or, the outside at least. It was so beautiful and I wanted to cry from the beauty.
Then, when the sounds rang (non-Muslims are only allowed in the Temple Mount for restricted times) I was ushered down a staircase that led straight into the 'Muslim Quarter' of the city....which is another area I'd resigned myself to avoiding because of what I'd been told by people to avoid. Everything is so beautiful.
Then I made my way back to the women's section of the Western Wall and after going to the wall and touching it for awhile with my eyes closed it just got to be too much stimulation and vibration and so I sat down for awhile in one of the chairs to close my eyes, ground, and just sit with everything.
When I opened my eyes the little white dove was sitting by the chair in front of me. Isn't she sweet?
The travel this year comes at a point in my life when my centers are located more securely within my mind and my body rather than adrift on imagined voyages of becoming. I am here. And I'm there. I'm with you even when I'm apart.
I can't say what will come in the future. I love and I feel and I trust that what comes will come.