I wake up bubbling over with joy today. Life is wonderful.
I’m happy to be part of such an amazing community where friends are family.
I’m thankful for the hour I got to spend on the phone with my mom yesterday, the 4th of July, and impressed with the excellent cell reception I get even when calling from the exact opposite side of the globe.
I’m thankful that I was born in a free country that the world envies, a place where people from every corner of the globe dream of living.
I’m looking forward to the walk to Lukla tomorrow and a chance to check my email, check in with my friends.
I’m happy that I’ll be back on the trail for four hours, in the company of my good friends Sapana and Pasang.
I’m so thankful for Sapana’s friendship and the memories we’ve made here at Pema Choling.
I’m excited for her and all the possibilities as she continues her five-month journey to Kathmandu, Pokhara, Lumbini, then to volunteer in Africa and hopefully to visit me in Finland come September.
I’m excited about the the cloth I’ll buy at the tailor’s on the way back from Lukla, and the little drawstring pouches I’ll make for my little monks to keep their marbles, rubber bands, candies, and other treasures.
I’m overjoyed when I remember that I’ve been accepted to a Master’s program, that my Finnish residency permit has been approved, and that – even though it will be so hard to leave my beloved Himalayan home and friends – I’ll start a whole new adventure in just two months.
I smile upon making friends with Dawa, my only Sherpa girl friend, and when she tells me she only completed seventh grade before starting to work, I’m infinitely thankful for the education I’ve received at one of my country’s best universities.
I’m so excited because look at all this free time I have! And how much there is to learn here! Sherpa society; Buddhist history and philosophy; Nepali culture; farming and horticulture; Nepali, Sherpa and Tibetan languages; building and construction; art and sculpture; not to mention a dozen books I hope to finish on my Kindle in the next month.
I’m giddy because I told my mom about Pasang’s incredible artistic talent, his desire to take a break from monastic life after 14 years, his gentle patience with the younger monks and capacity to teach, and my silent wish that I could bring him to America as a master craftsman to share Buddhist art and technique with the West.... I’m giddy because my mom is so passionate about others; she believes in their talents and dreams and has offered to help me help Pasang and is actively looking for schools, universities, art guilds, monasteries, and Buddhist foundations that may sponsor or host him.
I’m joyous because I live on top of the world, and at this moment I wouldn’t trade the breathtaking view from my bedroom for any of the First World comforts.
I’m thankful because I can’t imagine a more blessed life than this.