We interrupt this review of the Spiritual Exercises of St Ignatius to bring you: TADA! My trip to Nepal...I promise to finish the exercises afterwards!
I think the theme of this trip is "Don't worry." I followed an impulsive desire to hike in the Himalayas a couple months ago and booked the Annapurna Circuit Trek. Supposed to be one of the most beautiful treks in the world but losing to modern roads, etc...so basically won't ever be the same in the next 10-20-100 years.
Three weeks ago a freak blizzard killed upwards of 40 people during the busiest time of the hiking season: right on the trail where I'm planning to hike. Mr G, at the agency I booked through, assured me everything is safe and a go. I am trusting him. The news report says that those killed were hiking without guides- hence why they didn't know or listen to reports of the weather. I know of one guided group that was caught in it though...but I'm guessing the guides are now hyper vigilant.
I do feel strange however hiking in the footsteps of the dead. I wish there was a tribute or something I could make.
So I made it to the airport 3 hours ahead of departure - which is unheard of for me. I've missed flights from arriving too late before. Alas the original flight was one hour late taking off due to mechanical problems with the wings so I missed my connecting flight. This put me in the airport for 10 hours before the next plane left for Abu Dhabi. Now I am about to land -> and have a 14 hour layover before I take off for Kathmandu.
I have been nervous thus far but now I am committing to not worrying. God made this trip happen from His inspiration to carrying it out. I'm going to trust Him which means I'm not going to expect or set my heart on anything. Detaching from things is the best way not to worry.
Later: Lying in a huge suite in a lovely hotel in downtown Abu Dhabi. I ate a huge dinner with a lovely woman from Sudan. The airline was AWESOME and provided transportation, hotel, meals free of charge. Glad I decided not to worry -> made it easier and me more grateful instead of a M.E. (millennium edition) brat ("I demand my rights!").
Did I mention the elderly Sri Lankan couple I met in the airport during my 10 hour layover? They also were on the delayed flight that made them miss the connection to Abu Dhabi. We spent the layover together and had a lovely day. They were so sweet and their son called to thank me for helping them get to their plane. I lost them when I arrived in Abu Dhabi but I have their email. I'll have to write to make sure they arrived home.
Tomorrow afternoon I'll arrive 24 hours late to Kathmandu. I missed the city tour but I assume we'll keep the original itinerary and I will head to the mountains the next day. It's all good.