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Karen M. Black
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A daughter's tale of truth, love and letting go

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An addictive spin on awakening, soulmates and past lives

Are most people to you scary or safe? The moment I became “the scary person”

“Wherever you go, go with all your heart.”
– Confucius

Here I am in beautiful Prague on Day 3 of my fourteen-day holiday! I have a secret desire to prolifically write here and so to kick things off, I decided that I'd write this issue of Moondancing in the outdoor café just by my apartment.

I'm staying in a 12th century residence, one of the oldest residences in Prague. It's in a quiet behind another building, where the street is so small it doesn't show up on the city map. I'm learning that Prague has courtyards behind courtyards, and places that you can see in plain view but can't quite figure out how to get there. It's rather like a sumptuous maze.

I'm traveling alone, and also visiting a friend. Some of you may know Sophia from the Making it through The Shift program. She's lived here with her Czech partner for many years. We'll have time to play for a few days, and then she's flying to Canada for a visit.

When I travel alone, I tend to be restrained as this is my nature. I'm mindful of details. I check and double check: cash, passport, credit card. Not because I'm fearful of thieves, more because I'm fearful of being absent-minded!

Don't laugh – I once left my wallet on a plane in France en route to Florence – I got it back in the mail, three months later but that's another story.

Me – the Tourist

My home for the next two weeks, is a small (exquisite!) apartment in the centre of a history rich city. Angled ceilings. Modern design. Exposed beams. Comfy bed!

When I wander from my apartment (jetlagged!) for the first time, I clutch a small map. I begin to note landmarks, which I'll use to find my way back.

The building where a man sits selling theatre tickets means I'm close. A wall of scaffolding covered in green mesh means turn here. The sign that says Wild Rose — means I'm right there, though I sometimes still have to turn around couple of times to choose the right small street.

While I am enjoying my travels, I am aware that I'm a stranger here. The young people are friendly, all know English. The older people more reserved. I'm a Foreigner, a Tourist here, aware that Western Tourists don't have a great rep (I don't want to be one of “those” tourists).

While traveling alone, I make smart decisions to deter the local pickpockets who do exist. I also remain open to a universal language. A smile. A soft spoken word said warmly, even if it's a word I cannot understand.

In my quiet way, I sense the people around me. Without a common language, trusting intuition takes the place of the intellect.

I move away from those feeling intense, or indifferent. I remain curious, watching for life in the eyes, awareness, an opening. I sense energy and respond. I'm also aware of the introverted side of me who requires a bit of formality first in order to trust as well.

Me – the scary person!

Last night, after spending the day walking in Petrinske park and almost making it to the castle (I couldn't figure out how to get there by foot), I coincidentally arrived back at the apartment at the same time as a young European couple, who unlocked the main door ahead of me.

The three of us head from the lobby up the stairs. One flight, two, then three – I was still behind them.

I didn't expect them to be on the same floor as me, as the building has many apartments. Yet, there's only two or three apartments on each floor.

On the small third floor landing, when I turned right to open my door, they looked behind them and I could see fear in their eyes. I was the stranger that followed them in, and then up three flights of stairs. Me – the scary person!

I smiled, nodded, quickly moved away and turned to unlock my door. See! It's okay. I'm staying here too. After, I wondered if I'd see them over coffee the next day. If we did, I wonder if we'd meet eyes for a moment, with a smile of recognition.

Are most people scary to you – or safe?

This morning on my way out, I notice that the door to the young couple's room is ajar. They don't clean every day here (for which I am grateful as I find this disruptive!). I sit down to have a latte and write this ezine, before meeting Sophia.

It's an odd feeling being considered the scary person. Yet on another level, I can understand. When we're outside our comfort zone, we don't know how we'd react to another who catches us by surprise. Not everyone has had the experiences in life that confirm: most people are good.

I am also aware that their reserve also reflects my own. While my nervousness at traveling by myself doesn't keep me at home, I have to say: it's a Heart Stretch for me. Though one with many rewards.

I am a stranger here. I'm a Tourist. I'm in an ancient city in another land. Yet I am also awakening my full potential. Connected to everything and everyone.

I welcome a gentle smile, soft eyes. Wherever I travel.

Meaning of life articles for your heart. Created with love.

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