Daily Archives: April 25, 2012

window on rainy day

An accidental pilgrim

This is the final of five posts about travel that celebrate the launch of my online class, Manifest Money for Spiritual Travel.

I was already uneasy on the train, because only a few months before a train crash has killed 13 people and the locals were still talking about it. Yet, I was determined to see as much of Sri Lanka as my short visit would allow and I was willing to push through fatigue and fear to get to Adam’s Peak, to see the purported footprint of Buddha.  A friendly young Buddhist monk sat next to me the first half of the trip, making friendly chit chat and recommending a meditation center outside of Kandy.

“It’s peaceful there.  You can relax,” he said.  Why would I stay in one place when there was so much to see?, I asked myself.

The guy who slid into the seat after the monk seemed unassuming enough; his curiosity towards me was no more creepy that any of the men I attracted traveling alone. Still, my guard was up because after six months in India and Sri Lanka, I knew what could happen.  A motorcyclist cruising by reaches out and grabs my breasts; the guy in the bus seat behind me grabs my side through the gap between seat and window; anonymous men in a crowded train thrusting their growing erections into my back; a guy on the beach posing as a jewelry vendor sneaks up to fondle me before running away laughing.  I was tired of all this, but I wasn’t letting it stop me.  I couldn’t.  That felt like giving in.

Continue reading