Traditional Thai Noodle Soup served on Sundays at Wat Mongkolratanaram

Wat Mongkolratanaram

Today was a day when I had to escape…if I had spent another minute in my house, dealing with the crap of my life I would have well and truly lost it. As it was by the time I was driving out of my drive way I was praying for divine assistance to guide me and protect me and surround me with love. I was feeling desperately in pain. Moments like this come without warning when I overextended myself emotionally, physically or financially. In this case I have been physically and emotionally working far too hard, for far too long on the process of selling my home and releasing belongings, or moving other belongings. The work, projects, maintenance and efforts of this pre sale time are thankless and completely all consuming as well as mind blowing. I have been keeping this effort and energy focus for eleven months, (and I have a GREAT FREAKING HOUSE!!) It is classically just the housing market, at least I am seeing more and more interest of late. Always a good thing. An open house is planned for next weekend. Though with the open house is a steam roller worth of pressure to make sure every t is crossed.

Today with escape and peace on my mind I drove to a Thai temple called Wat Mongkolratanaram in the Palm River area of South Tampa. It was a gift to spend part of an afternoon there. I was able to enjoy authentic Thai food that people from the temple cook each Sunday to raise additional funds. This year their new temple was dedicated and it is beautiful. When I visited this afternoon one local Thai woman proudly showed me the new gold decorative windows that had recently arrived from Thailand, and will be installed to make the outer windows of the temple match the ornate style of the roof. In front of the temple door stands a beautiful gong that is probably rung before temple services. Outside the door were a mix match of shoes and sandals that everyone removes before entering the temple as a sign of respect.

The temple gardens are filled with large majestic trees and a path down to the river where children and adults were walking out on to a pier to enjoy the view. As I carried my Thai noodle soup and coconut rice cakes down to the river front picnic tables I finally felt like I could feel a deep breath of peace flowing through my body. I had removed myself from my every day life and entered for an afternon the life of the Thai community and I was deeply grateful. Not only do need to remove myself from the silliness of constant house chores but I need to immerse myself in an exotic culture, which I deeply miss experiencing since returning to live in the United States.

I know travel and adventure will come again into my life. Still this stage seems to be lasting eternally long and feels incredibly painful some days. So on this day, outside the temple where they had set up a prayer area with candles and incense I lit an incense and said a prayer of gratitude for being there, for what I have in my life and for the peace I found there today. If you are finding yourself in a stressful or painful time look for a place of peace where you can spend an hour. Even if it is your local park or botanical garden. May your day be filled with love and healing.