I have always liked these two cards. I may not have always appreciated them, but they resonated the most. Beginnings. Endings. Times of change and perhaps, upheaval.
I was reading a series of letters I'd posted in a blog almost four years ago and started thinking of how different things had been back then. How different I had been in some ways and how certain things had not changed. I remember telling a friend how much I missed myself, the old me. And him telling me that it was ok, that it didn't matter what version I was.
We are funny creatures. Sometimes scared of change, sometimes craving it. But do we really change? I once sought to run away from myself, to reinvent who I was. Yet, one of my favorite authors when I was in high school, Anne Rice, once wrote, "None of us really change over time. We only become more fully what we are."
I'd like to think that we become better. We might not always get there using the best route. It might sometimes be rocky, be hilly, even be mountainous. Journeys change us but I see it as a test to find the best things in oneself and let those parts of you come through. Three and a half years in Dar has taught me a lot about myself and what I could potentially be. I discovered new skills and also re-discovered and re-purposed old ones. I learned how to cook and haggle (albeit reluctantly) now and then. I learned how to accept compliments and how to not shut my eyes when dancing.
My time in Tanzania is coming to an end. To some, six months may be a lifetime or at least sound like a long time. To me, it's not that far off. Ten weeks till my US trip and then ten weeks after that I'm out of here. I regret it a bit that I hadn't been able to say goodbye to Viet Nam properly. So for this one, I'd like to savor my beach/pool weekends, spend time with friends as much as I can, and just enjoy the rest of my Dar experience. Perhaps that's part of version 3.1. Instead of spending the last months in a haze and just jumping off, I can keep my eyes wide open between this adventure and the next.