Friday, September 26, 2008

My happy place

I want to move to New Mexico. Well, actually I'd like to move to Mexico. But since that isnt even a realistic option right now, for now New Mexico will do. Ever since I visited it a year ago, and then again this year, the place keeps calling me back. It's this strong urge to want to live there, this strong feeling of belonging, almost as if "that desire originated in the soul of the universe". You'd have to have read the Alchemist to get that last part (if you havent read this book, forget this blog, rush over to the nearest bookstore right now and start reading it NOW! I am not exaggerating when I say your life will never be the same again).

You know how when things get really, really stressful, your mind takes off and finds comfort in its happy place? Well, my happy place is the memory of this one morning in New Mexico last year when we were driving through the Jemez Mountains - just Joe and I. We had spent the night camping literally in the middle of thick forest because we got lost. We had tried to take a short cut through the mountains and lost the road we were supposed to be on. Sounds a little filmy, doesnt it? But no, there was no dancing around the trees bursting into a Bollywood song. And it really did happen that way. And it was getting dark and if you've ever driven through the Jemez Mountains, you'll know that the smart thing to do is just stop, sleep and wait for the morning to see your way. Because the narrow road winds up and down around the mountain and it's easy to drive off the cliff in the dark. So we camped in the middle of a ponderosa pine forest and waited for morning.

My memory is of that early hour of the morning when we had set off again to drive. After talking to some construction workers we encountered along the way, we realized that the road we were meant to take was under construction and we would have to make do with a dirt road that led out of the mountains. And so there we were, driving through the heart of the mountain, on a bumpy dirt road, building up a dust storm behind us as we drove on. The only car along the road for miles on. Literally in the middle of nowhere. The sun's rays filtering in through the thick canopy, lighting up the path ahead of us. And it was driving along that forgotten dirt road to nowhere, that for the first time in months, I felt unburdened and carefree. The stress of all I had gone through in the past months seemed trivial, and nothing in the universe felt as important as being there, right there in that moment, savoring what life had brought along my way. What lay ahead of me was not important, and what I had been through was temporarily forgotten. I was content with the tranquility of that moment in itself, just simply driving along that endless road, warming up under the early morning sun rays, looking out of the window. Life was simple, right then.

The trees soon cleared up and we got a glimpse of the luscious green valley, dotted occasionally with small spanish style houses or pueblos as they are called, that are the trademark of New Mexico. Clay red houses with little bancos built into them. Hand painted tiles sometimes plastered into the walls. Bright red chile ristras dangling from the roof. A horse or two grazing free in the backyard of the valley.

It was at that moment that my soul decided this is where I belonged. I had found my spirituality. It wasn't buried in some church or temple. It was right here, in this little corner of the world where I felt happiest and lightest at heart.





~vagabond~ © 2008

3 comments:

Diana said...

Happy Diwali...Havnt read the post..will come bak for it....

trisha said...

"Life was simple, right then." yes for me too, when am in the presence of something beautiful, I respond in the same way..in fact had actually meant this in the Halogen post but my friends missed it.You are a very romantic soul :)
whos Joe?

~vagabond~ said...

@ Diana: Oops. Didnt notice this comment on time. Oh well here's a happy belated Diwali to you! :)

@Trisha: Joe is Joe. :P
Click on the link in the post to find out. :)