Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Lazy Saturdays

Who's that creepin' on the right? Oh, it's just my bf wearing my shoes.
Alex and I were supposed to meet our friends and go to the Boreyeong Mud Festival this weekend. But after a last-minute snatching-of-sorta-cheap-Thailand-tickets overtook our wallets (yesss!), we were too broke to go. SO. We did our own [cheap] thing at home, which always proves to be the most fun! Although, I did feel really bad about letting down my friends whom I told I would come and bunk up with. Man, money sucks sometimes.

Lee Mart

But I'm trying out a new mindset where I don't obsess, nor stress over it (which is what happened when I realized how low my balance was). I'm learning to accept. Not just money, but life, really. Alex and I have been listening to dharma talks online lately, which discuss how we can apply Buddhist practices to our own lives and find true contentment. It's all in acceptance of what is. Or, as a group of older Buddhists that Alex hung out with once said, "Did I 'should' myself today?" -- say it aloud and you'll find the humor. It basically means that, by giving yourself a list of "shoulds" -- I should workout more, I should do better at my job, I should be as good as she/he -- you are trying to control the situation, rather than just letting go and letting everything be as it has already been perfectly aligned to be. What I find most fascinating, having listened to quite a few of these talks now, is how applicable these practices are - how utterly intertwined they are, really -- to Christianity. Mindfulness. Loss of "ego" and "self," a lifestyle 
Third random set of keys I've found lying around in Korea.
Christians are supposed to be carrying out... Releasing control and letting life be. According to the Bible, "All the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be."(Psalm 139:16) Yet, the most controlling, clutching-tight-to-comfort-and-pleasure individuals I know are Christians. Why is that? I just think we've really gotten off-track, all of us. (click here for an incredible talk ("Flow and Presence") by a wise woman named Tara Brach... I listened to it last night and highly recommend it.)


Now this weekend started as any great one does... petting cute puppies. The momma dog next door to me recently had a batch, and I play with them and bring her treats as often as I can... they're so adorable! After much puppy-cuddling on Saturday morningAlex and I decided to go hang by the river in my town. There's a foot bridge where two rows of white, rectangular rocks protrude from the the surging waters (it's been raining a lot, so yes, surging). We sat on those. I brought some thread to work on jewelry with and Alex just brought himself; he immediately sprawled out topless on the rock next to me, his limbs falling over into the stream. 

He wanted to get in and swim. I told him I didn't know if that was a good idea, as I never see anyone in there, and I've been told that "you don't swim in that river" (by foreigners, nonetheless). I could feel a burn happening (see below), so I went to sit on the riverbed, in the shade of a tree. Next thing I know, I hear a squeal of joy; I look up to find that Alex has stripped down to his boxers (technically Korean Won short shorts) and is splashing around in the two-foot-deep water, pure bliss spread across his face. All I could do was laugh.
What I brought home with me after the river... ugh.

Later, we ate pizza, I got a quick haircut, we found a kitten and played with him for a few minutes, then strolled around town, exploring parts we had never been to before. That's one of my favorite things, I think. I got some nice shots (the pictures throughout this post). We walked until dusk overcame us, then bought a knife, a watermelon, and sat out again by the river. It was the ultimate lazy, yet rejuvenating Saturday.

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