South India Diaries: Leaving the Ashram

I’m currently at Ama’s Ashram in Kollam (Quilon). The driver Tomas dropped me off down here as our last stop. I have to say I was teary-eyed to see my companion go.

Having spent just a day here, I am getting antsy here at Ama’s Ashram. It’s no one’s fault other than my wanderlust to want to see and jet-set to more of India. My point in coming to the Ashram was to learn to meditate, to quiet the mind. It was also to see this Holy space.

Meditation? Eh, Maybe Next Time!

I wish I could be more focused and committed to meditating for more than 2 minutes. Maybe next time, when I’m mentally prepared and truly wanting to do it. This was written about in Eat, Pray, Love which inspired me to visit the Ashram. The first few days Liz Gilbert was adjusting to Ashram life in India, her mind wandered a million a minute.

There is no yoga instructor here either which I was hoping but someone gave me a good idea of hiring a personal yoga instructor once at the beach of Goa. I am excited for that!! Although I just checked in last night, I am going to leave as soon as I can book a train or bus to Varkala, a beach southward to relax. Or Trivandrum, where I will take my flight out to Varanassi or Goa.

Kerala is a beautiful, coastal, tropical area, with many beautiful temples, coconut trees. Very green, with a gentle/slow paced life, straw huts, and beach living. I realized that there’s more to India that I want to see besides the South which is gorgeous but better for a slow, romantic getaway. Given 6 months- 1 year, I would relax and fully immerse myself into this surrounding. But given that I have only 2 weeks left, I need to prioritize my time in this humongous country.

Leaving South India to the North

I am going to book a plane straight to Varanasi to see the Ganges River for a few days, the oldest city in history, known also for the holy funeral processions (daily burning corpses) and am advised not to be surprised if I see a dead body floating around. Many elders come ready to pass away in peace with their families, which is suppose to be a beautiful, holy environment.

I’d also like to ride Camels on this trip or in another India trip. A friend of a friend Marianne told her tales of riding camels in the north and sleeping under the stars with them. Talk about surreal.

Meet Ama – The Hugging Saint

She has hugged and transformed the lives of over 20 million people.

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