Tag Archives: finding goodness

Who Does This?

 

Note: My version of this blog consolidates the many acts of kindness we received during our three months in Iran. Lluís, however, has done an incredible job writing about all of these experiences in much greater detail. If you really want to see how Iranians are, please take a few minutes and translate his post, Però quí fa tot això? from Catalan to English (Google Translate may help). All of these things happened to us…they are all true… and we are still overwhlemed thinking about how good people are to us!

 

We have been so lucky to be the recipients of all sorts of kindness for 18 months from Thailand to Uzbekistan.

But Iran takes hospitality to a completely different level, something we have not found anywhere else on this journey or on other “normal” trips.

Continue reading Who Does This?

The Shortcut

“Look at the map. This dirt road may be a shortcut. We’ll avoid the main road and traffic, and maybe we’ll save a couple of kilometers.”

The sun is climbing over the horizon, the birds are up, and farmers on horses wave to us. The soft green rice paddies create the illusion of a morning hike out in nature, away from people and noise. We haven’t walked a trail like this for many months.

It sounded like a good option at 6 a.m.

Continue reading The Shortcut

One Moment: Those People

Ali waves to us from the top of the hill. We wave back, reluctantly.

It’s the end of our walking day, and we are scanning the desert landscape for a suitable campsite. We have our eye on an abandoned house on the flattened section of the hill not far from where Ali is standing. Continue reading One Moment: Those People

Cooking Together

 

“Would you like some coffee? And we have cake…want a piece?” asks Mele as I untangle myself from my walking cart harness.

“Yes! Thank you!” Homemade cake and fresh coffee sound like a perfect way to kick off this phase of our trip.

It’s been a long travel day. The coffee feels good sliding down my throat, scratchy after an overnight flight. It’s nice to feel like I’ve walked into a new comfort zone.

Continue reading Cooking Together

Time to Connect

“I want to be an actor,” an older teen says. He has some beautiful dance moves down pat, and almost made us cry with his monologue interpretation of a being a kid on the street.

“I will study technology,” chimes another teen.

“I want to be a cricketer,” asserts a 10-year-old, nodding his head as if it’s already a done deal.

The girls huddle nearby, playing timid, but when they perform a welcome dance for us, their shyness disappears and their light inside brightens up the room.

These are a few of the children at the Aparajeyo-Bangladesh’s Chittagong Center. If they weren’t here, many of them would be living on the streets. They come from who knows what kind of backgrounds–domestic violence, drug-addicted parents, sex industry abuse. The sad list goes on.

Continue reading Time to Connect

Welcome! Come in! Tea?

 

“Choi? Chay?”

These Tajik and Russian words will long echo in our ears and our hearts. They are more than an invitation for tea. They are a way into people’s homes and lives. They are reflections of a kind of hospitality people in today’s busy world don’t seem to have time for any more. These words have come to mean “Tajikistan” to us.

Continue reading Welcome! Come in! Tea?

Walking the Wakhan Valley

 

We round a bend on the bumpy road, and I am immediately spellbound. I want to ask the driver to stop the car so I can fall to my knees and bow in honor the beauty before me. My jaw keeps slipping towards my chest with each rock we roll over. My eyes tear up.

“My god. It’s beautiful.” I whisper over the lump in my throat. I can’t make my mouth spit out the words, “Stop, please, stop. We must see this greatness at a standstill.”

I have never before truly understood what compels climbers to summit the world’s biggest mountains, but now I catch a glimmer into their psyche. Staring at the Hindu Kush from the road snaking through Tajikistan’s southern corner, all I want to do is touch these faraway jagged, snowy peaks. Touching them with my eyes is not enough. I want to touch them with my soul.

Continue reading Walking the Wakhan Valley