Letter from Belize no. 91
Well it is a strange thing about writing newsletters. Usually what happens is that an idea for a topic pops into my head based on something I have seen at the Retreat, or something that has happened or some event we have held and suddenly – there it is, a perfectly formed letter. However last month – nothing, this month – nothing so I am thinking that maybe that is the topic, the very nothingness.
So what has been happening? Bird life – very quiet apart from a few migrants returning from the north. Events – nothing because of on going and very necessary COVID restrictions. Garden – burgeoning because of wonderful rains.
The rains have been excessive for some further to the south caught in the devastation of Hurricane Eta closely followed by Iota bringing in its wake rain like we have not seen in years. 2 weeks ago we had 190 mm or 8 inches over 3 days. Our garden coped admirably and the water very quickly drained away.
Belize had its own general Election in the shadow of the US election and now has a new Government. They got a bit over zealous in their jubilation and held parades which have lead to increased cases of COVID. I am not sure what happened to the rule of no gatherings of more than 10 people.
Henry and I? Well we continue with our weekly satsangs on Whatsapp and that is going very well. In October our solar batteries came to the end of their life and we had to resort to daytime electricity only but got very fond of our paraffin lamp. But you wonderful people responded so quickly to our Face Book appeal for help and we were able to install new ones – just before the week to 10 days of heavy rain and cloud cover so that saved our vegetarian bacon.
Other things planned like painting a mural in Corozal with our art class and meeting up with our Women’s group are still on hold. I have to say I increasingly enjoy the isolation, not that I am becoming a recluse. I still love being around people but I am getting more comfortable with my own company and reflections and understanding as it grows. Retreat is absolutely the right word for this place – retreating within oneself to the depths of wisdom to be found inside us if we only put aside the mental chatter to allow it to mature.
There are 2 major things that have come out of this time of apparent nothingness for me. First is to be thankful for everything we have. Really. We are fortunate in so many ways and when I feel a bit disgruntled I have to stop and remind myself how piddling is the frustration in the light of so much abundance. And the other thing is accepting that we – people who always thought we were invincibly in control – in fact have NO control. We can no longer confidently plan for the future, we can no longer plan even for each day with certainty of the outcome. I am writing this letter right now because my plan to go and buy a new weed-eater came to nothing as the car won’t start so I am happily stuck at home until the mechanic can get here. But, how grateful I am that I got home ok yesterday evening on a rather lonely back road when I felt the truck losing power and I knew that if I let it stall I may not be able to start it again. And grateful too that we have recently found a new mechanic who is willing to come to the house to rescue one. I know, we all have such stories to tell and I still feel very strongly that if we can come out of this surreal time wiser and stronger and less arrogant and greedy then it will have been worth it.
Our love to all of you.
May you keep safe and well and achieve great wisdom.