Sitting on a veranda at sunset staring out the Blackwood River in Augusta, Western Australia, I felt a spiritual pause. My mind and breathing stopped. I was becalmed. And then I saw this seagull looking at me quizzically as if to ask ‘what are you doing with your life’? I am not sure of the answer.
All of my life there has been a pulsing rhythm that has guided me, sending me in this direction and that taking me to the red iron ore mounds at Rio Tinto’s Cape Lambert in Western Australia’s Pilbara coast to understand the impact of global warming on master planning; hurtling down a russet corrugated road toward Dampier Peninsula in the Kimberley so fast that the tyres barely touched the ruts; standing with the Governor General of New Zealand as she introduced me to Nelson Mandela and his daughter while waffling on about a trip to the rose garden; sitting alone in front of the Dali Lama in a Pan Pacific hotel room, our knees nearly touching as a minder looked on; walking quietly in the passageways of the Esmeralda, a Chilean naval training ship that had been used during the dark days to torture people, talking to the young sailors about the ghosts they can hear at night, and speaking up about women’s rights being human rights to a private girls’ school in Kathmandu as they applaud me for saying in Nepal you worship women of stone but disregard women of flesh only to learn the next day that my place in a delegation to meet the king was cancelled.
These true events, these moments in my life, occurred because I trusted in the journey.
Now, the frenetic pace of that life seems to have slowed. I am being made to listen. I am being made to question. I am in a pause. I am learning what it is to live simply. I have lived a unique life but now the mission is to learn how to appreciate what I have learned and find in all of the detritus of this incredible life its simplicity.