One Last Indian Sunset

As I write this, I’m sitting in the VIP lounge at the airport in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia (my connecting flight to London got postponed and the staff has comped me access to the lounge as a result.) It’s hard not to feel nostalgic being outside of Asia for the first time in a year and a half.

It certainly wasn’t easy going through the numerous fond farewells that necessitate leaving a place you’ve called home for four months. The boys at La Fenice succeeded in pouring shots of all different liquors down my throat in celebration of our time spent together. I gave all my extra belongings to the incredibly sweet young waiters at Fatima’s restaurant. Shiraj looked like an Indian version of speed racer in my old white motorcycle helmet. When they told me they were all going to miss me and shouted “See you in October!” (the start of the next tourist season), I felt their sincerity and truly appreciated it. Longtime friends and fellow yoga teachers such as Izzy, Deepak, Rachel, and Gemma wished me well and I felt so grateful for the lessons they have imparted on me. I parted ways with a really amazing girl who I only had the good fortune of hanging out with for a week, but who made my last week special. And I shared some carrot walnut cake with the family below me, who promised to keep my room ready for next season. Elton, the 10 year old boy, said “Have a happy and safe journey, Chris!” as I closed the gate, summarizing the love I’ve felt from the community in Agonda.

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I drove down to the beach for one last glance at the setting sun and some time to process what this place has meant to me. I was hoping that my favorite dog, Flint, would keep me company as he usually does but he was nowhere to be found. I watched the waves for a few minutes, feeling the waves starting to bring out some deeply rooted emotions. I was just about to turn my back on the ocean when who came bounding down the beach but my bud Flint! It was almost as if he sensed this was goodbye and goofily pranced over to my left side where he sat down contentedly and watched the skyline as I scratched his ears.

My beach bud Flint.

My beach bud Flint.

After a few minutes, another dog came down the beach and I urged Flint to go play with him, taking it as a sign that my time in Agonda was complete . As I walked away, I glanced back one last time with moist eyes ready to tear over, but instead put a smile on my face and continued walking down the road; the road promising more smiles and new adventures.

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