Miscellaneous, My Digital Universe

So, you think you know it all?

Don’t expect someone that didn’t see you break a sweat to understand your journey.

Sometimes it’s all about how you interpret something. For some, a journey is straightforward, so when they see someone that is curious and don’t mind getting lost, they may interpret the wanderer as someone that’s lost. But, isn’t life more about the journey and less about the destination? Then again, sometimes it’s less about the journey and more about the destination.

Some journeys, like the Annapurna circuit in Nepal, is about the journey AND the destination. Which brings me to my point: it’s always better not to jump to conclusions about another’s experiences or choices. Don’t play God.

A person’s experiences in life, what they do and why they do it, is a subjective mystery for everyone (except the person). Who can see the insides of someone’s mind, their emotional state, their true desires, to be able to accurately decipher why they chose chocolate over ice cream?

Perhaps I am one of those that feel as if I can sense the pressure of the probing eyes of those who know me, wandering what I’m doing with my life. I feel as if I can sense their judgmental (not always negative) interpretations as to what may be going on with me. Perhaps they are right. If so, they know about the inner workings of my mind and heart more than I do. But, do they really? On the other hand, they are making judgments based on their subjective understanding of the world and the even more limited understanding of who I am as a being. For in reality, we all pick and choose what we share with the external world.

We share our sense of fashion with total strangers by the way we dress (whether we intend to or not), while our smile can communicate our stress-levels to someone that’s known us for years. Since there’s no exact science (to my knowledge) that accurately decipher what’s goes-on inside someone, the goal is not to figure out how to get that information. It’s none of our business to figure out something that another person is purposely hiding. THAT, is an invasion of privacy and extremely annoying. What’s more annoying is when people THINK they know what’s going on and try to interpret or TELL the person as if they know what’s going on with them.

In my opinion, it’s better to make anyone feel at ease and accepted, so they can freely share and be themselves around us without fear of judgment. Let them define who they are to us. Listen more and remind yourself to put your interpretations in check. That will open up an opportunity for honest conversations rather than playing hide and seek. Hide and seek is best played with kids, not adult behavior.

Miscellaneous, My Digital Universe

My Sri Lankan road trip

I come from a family that loves the open road. During road trips, my two siblings and I gave my parents a headache from the time we got into our minivan. I remember packing little snacks and claiming the window seat, every time! I liked to put down the window and feel the cool breeze run across my face. In Sri Lanka, where I grew up, you could smell the ocean when you got close to the coast and smell tea when you got close to the mountains.

I live in the U.S. now, but recently my whole family went back to Sri Lanka. The kids were all grown up and the love of the open road had only gotten stronger over the years. We have been out of the country for some time and were excited to be back on the road where cattle, monkeys and even elephants made frequent appearances.

Driving in Sri Lanka is very different than driving in America. For one, people drive on the opposite side of the road (like they do in England). Unlike the straight, flat roads in Texas, Sri Lankan roads are bumpy, winding, narrow and full of surprises. Depending on which part of the island you are driving through, you can expect to see scenic mountain views with lavish waterfalls, white-sand beaches, landscaped tea estates and herds of elephants crossing the road! Ah, and… coconut trees–they are everywhere!

Everything about a Sri Lankan road trip is amazing. There are road-side vendors selling all sorts of exotic fruits, hand-made crafts, pottery, furniture, souvenirs, etc. You’ll also see cattle, water buffalo and elephants crossing the road at their leisure–so you have to watch out! And I love the paths in central Sri Lanka that are surrounded by green paddy fields and tall pine trees found at higher altitudes.

My family loves to make pit stops during road trips. It offers a chance to get out and take a few pictures or buy some fruit from a roadside vendor. When we were visiting the eastern coast of Sri Lanka on our last trip, we saw some fishermen bringing in their daily catch. So we pulled over and gave them a hand. Pulling a net full of fish is a community activity. A rhythmic dance-like movement helps the fishermen pull their catch ashore. The net is so heavy!

If you ever get a chance to visit this beautiful island, I can guarantee you one thing: you will not be bored. It is an adventure that will take you into a world of “exotic overload.”

By Cheran Ratnam

If you have a road-trip experience you want to share, tell us about it at scusasocial@gmail.com, RoadLoans would love to go along for the ride. Don’t forget to send pictures.