Have faith in Allah, but tether your camel
Notebook Entry: 20 May 2013
“Have faith in Allah, but tether your camel.” Mufidah said this earlier today in response to my recalling what Kate’s mother, Stella, had expressed during her visit here about that wonderful feeling when traveling of things finally coming together after so much having been up in the air.
What Mufidah and I call opening to the universe — feeling the fear of the unknown but staying calm, knowing that so much works out in the end if only you can continue to trust in the unfolding of events in their own time. Put forth the intentions, do what one can, and then let go, have patience, stay flexible, and continue to respond to what does come, setting forth myriad possibilities in case the first few don’t take seed. That combination of intentionality, creative endeavoring, seed planting, and patience open up whole new worlds.
Here we are at Kate’s after not having had a place to stay until dusk had come, despite our best and varied efforts. Things could have become quite unsettling. Instead, we kept contacting various folk we could think of in addition to a dozen or so CouchSurfing hosts — old student-friends and such — all the while organizing our car for our continuing travels, and trusting that something would come, while, too, considering whom else we could perhaps stay with before the start of our next house-sitting gig, just north of London.
And then we let go, and went for a quiet stroll down an old Lewes road. As we entered the tunnel which runs below the A27 leading to the footpath we used to take to Kingston, I felt a certain openness that something might come still.
We walked out to the footpath, wished we had a Quechua tent for such occasions — so we could wild camp without the hassle of pitching our quite large tent — and then I realized that I’d unconsciously turned my iPhone onto airplane mode, turned it back on, and hoped that something — a text message from Kate, or an email from a CouchSurfing host — might have been sent in the meantime.
Sure enough, a text from Kate popped in, having been sent just nine minutes previously, welcoming us to come stay with her, just about the time we’d entered into the tunnel below the A27 and I’d felt that feeling that something might well open up for us.
Have faith in Allah, but tether your camel.
Sean M. Madden is a writer-educator, photographer and slow traveler. A digital nomad, he’s also co-founder of Creative Thunder, helping people to fire up their online presence and prowess. To get a free copy of the inspiring Creative Thunder Manifesto, click here.