My Story: Part 5
While in Rome I had seen a number of news reports about the Greek debt crisis, so the current events geek in me was interested to go to Greece and see what the situation was like on the ground. When I arrived in Crete, there wasn’t anything immediately noticeable with regards to the crisis (I wasn’t in Athens where protests were taking place), but locals seemed frustrated with the situation and with the EU. It was also clear that Cretans considered themselves self-sufficient and rather autonomous, and were prepared to survive on their own if it came to that.
My friend was visiting for a few days and she and her mom greeted me at the bus station and took me to the apartment I would be renting. The town hugged the sea and my apartment rental was less than a block from the beach. It was beautiful. That night we drove into the mountains for dinner and attended a traditional Greek dance show put on by a local troupe. I loved the exposure to a new culture, even if we didn’t throw any plates like I’d seen in movies.
A couple of days later it was time for my friend to leave and her mother invited me on a walk so she could show me more of the town. Along the way we met one of her friends who was closer to my age and a schoolteacher off for the summer. She graciously offered to take me to some of the other beaches in the area that I wouldn’t be able to reach without a car. The landscapes were absolutely stunning. I had never quite seen the blue-aqua color combination of this water; it was crystal clear crashing into the arid Cretan shores. I was inside a postcard.
While my new friend and I grabbed some dinner, she mentioned that her brother was coming into town. I inquired a bit about him and she told me that they both practiced pranic healing. I was intrigued. When I was sick I had been to a healer and had started to learn more about alternative healing, and I am always interested to hear more. So she told me a bit and invited me to meet her brother and some friends. When we met we chatted about all sorts of things and I was fascinated to hear different perspectives, be exposed to totally new facets of spirituality and just talk about our personal journeys. I was just some random American woman passing through Crete for a few weeks, seemingly without much direction at all, but everyone was incredibly warm and welcoming to me.
A week or two later I was at the beach with my friend and asked her opinion on something that kept finding its way into my thoughts. Early in my stay in Crete, I noticed that my receipt from the grocery store showed the same total as the one from a trip a few days prior. I had been to two different stores on different days and purchased different items, yet the totals for both visits had been identical. Numbers tend to stick in my head, and I took note of this seemingly minor but improbable occurrence.
I asked my friend if she thought it meant anything if the same numbers kept appearing to me. She told me about angel numbers — a way for angels to communicate messages to us through numbers (each number/number combination having a specific meaning). I remembered sitting in my cube at work a year earlier having a casual chat with a co-worker. She was going through a tumultuous time in her life, but was starting to recognize the new beginnings around her. She told me that she had started to see 11:11 everywhere and had taken it as a sign. Plenty of people talk about making a wish when 11:11 appears on the clock, so I didn’t think too much of it one way or the other.
But when it came to the identical grocery bill totals, it was yet again a moment that I noticed that I noticed (just like in NZ when I looked up at my computer screen and saw a FB post about Bali), and I KNEW there was a meaning, it wasn’t just a coincidence. After our conversation at the beach, I went home and Googled angel numbers. Suddenly here was an entirely new potential line of spiritual communication — a reminder that we’re never on our own, and an opportunity to receive guidance. To me, it was pretty cool. I choose to believe this is legitimate, and since then I’ve started seeing more and more repeating number sequences.
I fully acknowledge what’s obvious here: there is a strong case to be made that if you start to anticipate seeing something, for example, a particular time on the clock, your mind will make a note of that and send you a reminder to look at the clock at that time. (Much like if you set the intention to wake up at a certain time in the morning, sometimes you don’t even need an alarm clock — you just wake up.) But, I believe that there is something greater than that at play here. I believe in angels and I believe we can receive messages from them. The methods of communication can vary, but for some people, including myself, one of them is through numbers. So for me, this was a really cool progression in my life.
As I prepared to leave Crete, I found myself getting emotional again seemingly out of no where. Once again I had had a wonderful time, and once again I felt like I was completely flying into the unknown. Suddenly I was feeling a bit apprehensive about my trip to Africa — what was I going there for anyway? Did I really need to do that?! And what came after that?? Maybe it was partly the pranic healing, but it was most definitely because I was stretching outside myself, expanding, and there were growing pains. On my last afternoon in Crete, I had another Skype session with my coach. As I walked back to my apartment to make the call, I just started bursting out into tears. I was a bit surprised at how quickly and seemingly inexplicably they had come. I composed myself a bit and got on the call, trying to hold back the floodgates.
My coach could see and hear my struggle and encouraged me to just let it out. This has always been a struggle for me. I was having a really raw moment, but even in front of her, a person who intuitively could see my insides (so there wouldn’t seem to be much point in trying to hide), I still couldn’t bring myself to be totally vulnerable and let it all go.
I got on the bus to take me to the ferry port. I had momentarily bounced back while I tended to the administration of my transportation, but as I watched the sun set over the sea and neared the port, I fought back tears again. I still wasn’t entirely sure from where or why this emotion was coming, but I was definitely heading deeper into my journey.
I took an overnight ferry from Crete to Athens so I could spend a couple of days in the capital city and see the sights before flying to Africa. I felt drawn to the ancient ruins in Athens. My curiosity piqued. A few weeks earlier I had stood amongst ruins of the ancient Roman empire; now I had the opportunity to immerse myself in another ancient empire and culture — that of the Greeks. It was really cool, and in fact almost surreal, to be standing in front of the Acropolis. This was truly a place I never thought I’d ever see in person.
It was really starting to hit me that I was on a special trip. I was bouncing around the globe, standing in places built thousands of years ago. I was meeting interesting people, and every place and every person seemed to have a lesson for me. Each leg of the trip had turned out to be purposeful and prepared me for the next. There seemed to be an invisible thread weaving together something greater. And now I was anticipating the biggest adventure yet: Africa. I knew this would be by far the wildest leg to date of both my travel and spiritual journeys, but I had absolutely no idea what to expect. The next level awaited me.