The Return of Wonder

By Mirjam

3 minutes read

23 hours in airplanes and waiting in airports, 20 minutes by mototaxi, half an hour by boat, 1 hour on foot.

20 degrees warmer, no local train station, no bus, no metro, no hospital. No streetlights, no flushing toilets, no mirrors big enough to see your whole outfit in. No tofu, no soy milk. No electricity after sunset, no wifi.

© Photo credit: Mirjam/Chaikuni Institute

I quit my job, gave up my apartment and left my friends, for this.

And “this” should have been a 3-month break from an inauthentic life, a “back to factory settings” reboot thing, to find inner peace, inspiration and force to go back home and start afresh. But the plane to take me back home took off with an empty window seat. I found home in not always having internet.

© Photo credit: Mirjam/Chaikuni Institute

When I was young the TV broadcast this fantastic show called McGyver. McGyver was a very creative man who could create a bomb out of an empty matchbox and a paperclip and save lives with a flat tire and a teaspoon. Being connected to his own creative flow, life always brought him those small things that he needed to perform his magic to save the world.

Living in the jungle is a bit like this. With no internet, no electricity and only candle light, 4 pencils and 2 sheets of paper one can create a myriad of games that will make you laugh until you cry!

I had forgotten I could laugh like that! I had forgotten the magic of having rubber boots with which one can venture across big puddles of rainwater in muddy roads. I encountered the joy of chasing toads that hop around in the garden at night, remembering that if you kiss them they might turn into a prince. I put seed in the ground smaller than the head of a pin and watched them grow into plants taller than I. I learned how to fry an egg without oil, how to make bread without an oven. When your solar panels only give you electricity at 10 in the morning life brings you a bicycle that you can turn into a blender so you can still have your breakfast smoothie.

In this creative flow I want to spend the rest of my life, surrounded by the greatest wonder sometimes in the smallest of things. Life brings you these presents all the time and completely for free, all that is needed is the ability to see them. But with so many distractions sometimes we forget to look up from our phone and we ourselves turn off our connection. The connection to ourselves and to our lives.

I am very grateful for Chaikuni to have brought that connection back to me.

© Photo credit: Mirjam/Chaikuni Institute