Feeling free and having fun….

I am sitting in the launderette watching our clothes whirl around in lots of bubbles and soapy suds.

I am having such fun, I arrived here to find a guy in bare feet doing his washing.

I went over to an empty machine, and was busy in the corner trying to make it work, but it wasn’t giving me a program to choose, and I was a bit confused and kept re reading the instructions to see if I had missed something…

The young man came over and told me the machine was broken, but that if I didn’t mind waiting his washing was finishing in 4 minutes…

We started to chat and I discovered that he is in the middle of a 3 month journey on his bike all alone. He has cycled from Belgium and he is following the coast around the edge of Spain covering 70 kilometres a day…

He doesn’t speak Spanish, but he says he doesn’t need to, he can say please and thank you and is able to get food – and he says he doesn’t need to speak much…

He has a tent with a cover for rain and a cover for mosquitos and in 7 weeks he has only used the mosquito net. He told me that he lies at night and looks at the stars, and he listens to the animals around him, and that he is free.

His name is Felix, he is 19 years old and has just finished his studies. He told me that his plan when he gets back to Belgium is to start work, and then keep travelling.

Felix told me that he likes being barefoot, I asked him what it is about it he enjoys….

He says he likes to feel the floor, and that it is fun.

He does have some shoes as he is covering many kilometers, but has also been cycling in flip flops for some of the time; he was joined by 4 Italian guys at one stage, who were incredulous at the guy cycling in flips flops…!

He told me too, how when he was at school he shed his shoes and that every student looked at him, and the head teacher ‘told him off…’

I have invited him to come and find us in Spain next year and join me for some barefoot running – He might well appear…

‘It’s fun’ of course struck a chord with me… ‘Have fun darling’ was the legacy my mother left me; and I am certainly doing that, even or especially in the launderette!

This morning when I was running around the park alone, I had a feeling of immense freedom. I was aware that over the past few years there has been a deeper surrendering to giving myself permission to run and have fun.

I have always done both things of course…

But there were often threads of oughts and shoulds , or ought nots and should nots pulling me back or pushing me in directions I might not wish to go.

Felix talked about feeling free, and about having fun.

It is no coincidence that we met today.

With many earth years between us, our energy still reflects lifetimes of finding out what freedom truly means… And we meet here, in a launderette in Spain, both of us here experimenting and experiencing on planet earth within the confines of a body and the beliefs and structures of others…

How to be free, and how to have fun….

 

The unique rhythm and beat of our lives…

I have always lived a total lifestyle, one that feels like I am always on holiday… One that therefore I don’t need a break or a ‘holiday’ from…

I have always worked and played at the same time, so play can be called work,  and work can be play… There is no separation…

I have always loved to run, to write and to work in the lives of others and so this is what I have done… Is it work or play? It is just is my life…

This doesn’t mean I haven’t had to work through emotional challenges, struggles, difficulties, sadness and losses…

But it still remains, I have never wanted a holiday or a break from my life, or felt the need to ‘take time away from it’… The rests and pauses are integral to the whole and all part of the rhythm and the beat of my journey here…

It has also been absolutely impossible for me to stay working or living in any way that doesn’t feel right for me…!  This doesn’t mean not staying the course when things are hard… If it feels right I know that within me I have huge resources for withstanding and ‘keeping on keeping on…’

But it has been impossible for me to stay somewhere where my spirit is crying out to move away from… This hasn’t always been seen as a positive quality, or easy to ‘action’…! ?

But as the years have gone by I have come to understand that it has served me very well in lots of ways – and two in particular…

One, I am living true to myself and the more I have followed this course, the more this has been borne out to ‘work’ both for me and others, even if it may not always look like it at the time!

And… Two it means I can teach from a position of experience, this doesn’t mean I teach people to do as I do; but I can teach people to listen to what they must do, which might be entirely different and not resemble anything I am doing in the slightest….

But, if we truly listen to ourselves, one of the biggest gifts this brings is the ability to truly be able to listen to another and this is the most wonderful experience… To be able to visit the land of another being, and travel in it with them; celebrating their world, their ideas, their values and experiences, rather than criticising, or being afraid of the differences…

And so we are on the road to Marrakech again to visit our good friend Jamal in Riad Saba, already the temperature is hot; the fresh winds of Essaouira but a memory; the blowing wind this morning with the vast expanse of a beach at low tide to run on; the colour and energy of the Medina all fading into a past that doesn’t exist…

There is only now…

And ‘now’ we are both working in our ‘office of the moment’, which is a little mini bus bouncing its way along the wide road with the dusty land stretching out beside us for miles and miles…

Anadi was reading today that big companies have been experimenting with their employees working ‘virtually’, for some time now – the article went on the say that in the not too distant future 65% of the workforce will be working from home… Wherever home may be…

In our case this is wherever we are… ?

Enjoying Marrakech, enjoying Riad Saba, enjoying the difference…

The dust was whipping all around the streets, whirling around, stinging our eyes, getting into our mouth if we didn’t keep is closed tight…

The bright blue sky, and searing heat, that had greeted us when we arrived, was replaced by heavy humid grey… We had lunched in a little restaurant with brightly coloured table cloths, on delicious moroccan salads, and the round flat sweet bread we are familiar with here…

Bartering over the price of six bottles of water – on our way back – we made our way through the throng of vendors eager for us to buy… Kittens and cats got under the feet of the locals, while mopeds – not pausing or slowing – dodging and winding their way through, skimmed right by us…

We are back in Marrakech, the noises, smells and energy so familiar to us…

Now we are sitting alone in the Riad Saba… A little bird is flying about, swooping and occasionally landing for a drink on the water feature in the middle. The uncustomary wind is settling, the cover over the open sky of the roof garden has stopped billowing and flapping…

While we were eating our lunch, I had a text from Fi… It was she who bought me the surprise gift of the tinkly silver delights to adorn my naked feet… I love them so much, and enjoyed dancing my way through Gatwick today, and then stepping out onto the hot runway of Marrakech with the sound of my bells, letting everyone know of my whereabouts….

Thank you Fi, for the fun and the sparkle and the joy 🙂

The sound of the call to prayer is starting up again… I love it, the primal energy, no words, just sound filling the air…  I can feel it in my body, the heat is static, I am in a completely different land again… No running as yet today; but in a little while we intend to venture out when some of the heat has left the day.

As we walked through the streets, alive with movement, colour, different smells and sounds to London, to Devon, to Spain… It felt more like being part of a film set, dropping in and falling into step… Walking along, joining in with ‘The march of the penguins’, to keep circling around the eternal cycle on this planet…

The journey we are all on, from birth to death…

Sometimes we attempt to forget this inevitability by creating chimeras of certainty here in life; where there is none… The only certainty is death, and life everlasting… Through the birth of the new, and the march of us all to pave the way for those who are following in our footsteps…

Therefore if each step is a conscious one, and a joyous one – and our tread on the planet is light – then we lead the way to freedom rather than creating resistance and shackles of fear…

 

 

Consciously aware of our choices…

I am on a train from Waterloo to Salisbury… I am meeting my sister Rosy for my birthday treat lunch… I do enjoy a birthday that runs for 6 weeks!

It has felt like an adventure of a day already… Anadi and I rose early, just before 6am, with the intention to run in Grovelands park

We opened the front door of our little ‘Stables’ home to a colourful array of bright pink blue orange summer flowers, and June warmth, shrouded in a grey sky; the air was clear warm and invited us to run.

We said ‘hello’ to Octavious the tortoise who was still in bed – it must have been early….  And set off to the park, but on arriving we found the gate locked  – the park opens at 8am – so instead we ran to the cricket ground at the end of Station road… We clambered through a hole in the hedge and then lapped the smooth green in figures of 8 around the two big expanses of well kept grass….

We greeted the  ground keeper who was starting all the sprinklers going, which we then dodged as we ran ,and said ‘good morning’ to the night watchman who was leaving at the end of his shift…

Tuesday morning dawning, rhythms routines, the tapestry of life… People doing the same things at the same time each day; round and round the sun we go; day dawns, night falls and the routines and rhythms keep circling as we circle the sun…

I boarded a train into central London; I changed onto a tube at Highbury and Islington – all the way, we were all squashed in, standing in the aisles and all around the doors…

Many people, many doing the same thing each day. Some meditating, some reading, some on their phones, some just standing sitting… All of us together on the train to London.

There is nothing wrong with doing the same thing; routines and rhythms can work, can help us to create, to work well, efficiently and productively… The key is to reflect, consciously, question… ‘Is this my path, is this what I truly want, is there a way to change if not…?’

Taking back our own power, finding our voice, recognising that we all create this world, we create the packed tubes, the business and busy ness of life… It is our creation.

We create the wind the rain, love and hate… We make it all…

So it is important to reflect on our creations, our lives unfolding, the patterns, the routines, the same things we do. We are joining in with it and so creating it… This is true of everything….

The key is reflection…

Consciously aware of our choices, our actions, our reactions our words and our every thought…