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It was a cool winter morning. A light drizzle was coming down as I began to contemplate what the purpose of my anxiety was. As a custom for every new adventure, I ask myself why fear seems to be present. In most cases, I find just a natural response to my state of being, living with the awareness of all the chaos that fluctuates throughout the days of all who come to exist.
We met at a teahouse whose open sign was plainly lying, and I found myself questioning all the choices that led up to this point. Now how did I manage to find myself drinking tea with an ageless Russian yoga practitioner who knew more about my life then the majority of my dear friends?
Simple facts can explain this, but the farce is much more enjoyable when we just look at the moment.
Conversation starts, questions are asked, emotions flurry and fall, and eventually she looks at me, saying, "Why did you want to see me, Nick?"
"Because your nice, you seem interesting, I enjoy having tea and talking to new people for the opportunity to express ourselves and learn from one another. All that fun jazz"
She seemed puzzled, but nonetheless excited to continue prying into who I was and how I became to be. And I welcomed this presentation of inquiries so sweetly. Maybe it's my own vanity, maybe it's a nice emotional release, but simply being able to talk about my perspective on life gives a sense of serenity to a deep level of my being. It's a rare royalty, but one I welcome whole heartedly. Why? Because I find my fear cannot hide when I present myself, I almost unknowingly summon it into my awareness. And sitting next to a biologist gives a great sense of peace to this emotion, because logic is the razor that sheds of pounds of frightened flesh. And how nice it is to lightly dance upon this burning world I often find myself crawling through.
Pleasantries and tea were exchanged, I began to mention my necessary departure and she offered her generosity freely.
"Come, I'll drive you."
As we left, she started giving me compliments that she, full of certainty, stated were not compliments.
"Look, I'm just saying the truth, you're a brilliant man. A compliment is something you give your wife, when she looks like a cow and you say, 'Oh honey, you are a beauty in red.'"
"But that means compliments are all lies!"
"See I look at this differently. I think you telling me I am a brilliant man is a compliment! Even if it's true, you don't need to say it, you're just giving it to me of your own kindness!"
"But is it kind? Is it kind to say, 'Oh the tree is red, and that squirrel is fat, and you are a beauty?' No, these are the truth!"
It was an interesting debate, but I had to agree to some parts of it. And I assumed the practice was good for my ego. I saw it as a way to take in praise and not get attached to it. Strange, but useful.
We pulled over and we began to hug, a mention of the importance of honesty and trust in friendship, and how your true friends are the ones who love you when your sad, not when life is going fluidly. She took my hand and expressed herself with words I can't remember. All I recall is the feeling of warmth, and a sense that there had been a connection made, helping both of us look to life with a little more love.
Even if only for that short, sweet moment.