Traveling for me is like meditation in that it takes time to get to where you want to go. Just like the Western yogis at the monastery in Mawlamyine said, it takes time for the mind to refresh itself to return to where it once was before filth filled the voids. In a way I feel like the few days spent at the monastery meditating was only a taster for what will one day come just as the Europe trip gave me a small window into the world I am capable of living and thriving in (not the physical world but rather the mental, emotional, and spiritual worlds). As my trip came to a close and as I flew back home filled with new perspectives and energies, I was excited about what lay ahead of me. Despite Europe now finding itself in my rear view mirror, I believed that I had now hit my stride and could fully accept who I was and embrace the thunderous roar my voice was always capable of. More or less, after my seven weeks abroad I returned to the old routine of how I had always done things with little alteration from the brief lessons I had already learned during that trip. The whole trip felt like a fanciful dream that someone else had lived but deep down I knew that that someone was me, he just needed to get prodded back out of hibernation and be reawakened to the world he had once so feverishly embraced. Looking back on that time in my life, I now know that my mind had not yet received enough of the necessary time to instill the lasting changes I wanted in my life. With the copious amount of time available to me (especially by myself) I have had plenty of time to think, contemplate, and consider. Although I am not sitting on a mat attempting to twist into a pretzel in a quieted room, I am still meditating but in a different way. I am experiencing new and exciting thoughts and with the challenges I have faced and strived to overcome, I am expanding myself into new horizons within my own conscious thought as well as my own personal presence in this big, scary world. Sure this world can be scary and intimidating ready to swallow you up before you have even had a chance to brace your feet but it doesn’t have to be. God only knows how many lumps, bruises, and shots to the gut and ego I have experienced but I have quickly realized how easily it is to get back up and keep moving forward. With each negatively termed experience, the Lord or whatever spiritual being out there has shown me how grateful that I am to be alive. Despite the setbacks and dire circumstances, I am still up and moving equipped to tackle life’s next great challenge.