I am sitting at the airport in Lisbon, Portugal, waiting to board my plane. This trip has been a wonderful adventure for me over the past six months. I don’t know why I was so driven to do it; I only know that it was extremely important for me. Perhaps I was feeling my mortality and wanted to make this trip while I thought I still was capable of doing so. Perhaps I just needed to go look for my true path in life. I can’t say that I’ve found my path along the way – yet. But I feel I am close.
I’m embarrassed to admit that I never made it back into Lisbon, nor did I get to the UNESCO World Heritage town of Sintra, just 30 minutes from where I was staying. Frankly, I needed a rest, so I gave myself permission to just lie on the beach for nine days instead of playing tourist right up to the last possible moment and wearing myself to a frazzle. I did, however, have an amazing experience in Portugal. Several days ago I was lying on a beach chair in that state of consciousness that is just between being asleep and being awake and I experienced a moment of the most pure peace and contentment I have ever felt in my life. It felt as if I was floating and that I did not have a care in the world – that all the mundane worldly things we worry about o n a daily basis are truly insignificant and not worthy of the least bit of our attention. It is hard to put this feeling into words, but I suspect that it is close to true bliss. I don’t know how long it lasted, because the moment I realized I was feeling it and began to think about it – to analyze it – the feeling vanished. Try as I might, I just couldn’t get it back, until two days later when it happened again.
I feel as if I’ve been granted a glimpse into true happiness. Being happy is not about being ecstatic or high as a kite. It’s about being even, balanced, and contented. If we’re really on a high or a low, we’re out of balance. I’m hoping that now I can be contented – I believe I can be. At the very least, I feel blessed to have experienced those few moments of pure bliss. So I’m headed home – grateful for the trip but (and perhaps for the first time in my adult life) grateful to be coming back to live in the USA.
Thank you all so much for following me these last six months, but do stay tuned, because I am sure this won’t be my last trip, as I am now addicted. Travel is a wonderful thing, if only to make one better appreciate home.