It has been Eid Al Adha, the festival of sacrifice, which meant a glut of public holidays in Bangladesh.
I could just not bear the thought of so much time alone against the backdrop of grumbling grief and blood splattered streets, so I decided on a last minute escape back to the mangroves.
The Sundarbans are an amazing place, so wild and untouched that the world is born each morning. All seemed freshly made, bright, and yet for me things were not so different. I found the same old personal dramas pacing out their parts against the new backdrop of tangled forest and brimming empty skies.
The play was still the same when the scenes changed. There was no relief. I could not escape myself.
That brought me to the awkward conclusion that much of what I like least is what I bring with me. I have a lot to shake off. There is still dust on my feet and it muddies fresh waters. Just as the beauty of the forest filled me, changed me, my inner world throws colours into the clean canvas landscapes – it is all connected.
There are moments when life seems to whisper ‘what do you want?’ with a promise, when the fullness of a warm wind is seductive and ripe with possibilities. There are nights when the slow spinning black tugs my thoughts higher, deeper, further into the unknowns and empty spaces.
But all too often there is no ask and answer, only run and chase, fight and flight. Travelling far from familiar paths, branching out from well worn habits, takes effort, awareness, the difficult admission that perhaps the way I have lived, the way I think is not always so free, that I can act in a way that is wholly contrary to my own heart.
In the company of fly flicks, dolphin leaps, snake slithers and a friendly guy ten years my junior, the penny finally dropped. In a our little human tableau, I came to see the ebb and flow of my emotions with fresh eyes.
It always easier to be honest in a breeze and there I had the space and silence to ask and answer. What I found was so obvious it surprised me – I have knowingly not known myself.
I sometimes want what I do not want. I sometimes chase what I have no real desire to catch or keep. Perhaps after years of knowing that I could not have what I most wanted, it came to be easier to aim for only what I wouldn’t really care to lose.
Making a change, choosing the shape of something newer, better, will be the next adventure.