October 15, 2013

Less Posessions = More Kindness

This morning I decided to ride my bike to BART. I prepared my bag with all the necessary stuff I would need during the day. It was laden with bike locks, a change of clothes for yoga, food, toiletries, cell phone, and keys. As I started my brief bike ride to the BART station I had this wonderful feeling of lightness which immediately turned into panic - I had left my bag at home. The only possessions I had with me were the bike, helmet, Clipper Card and my school ID.

Instead of panicking I came up with a plan. I continued on to BART and took my bike with me to the station closest to my school. Should I leave my bike in there with no lock? I asked a BART worker if she thought it would be stolen? "Oh yes, I can pretty much guarantee that it will be." So she generously locked the bike up for me. Then I went up to my school and talked to one of my friends who works security, telling him about my lack of food. He offered to buy me breakfast but I declined. As I passed him again a few minutes later he said, "you dropped this" and handed me some money. I was so thankful that this loan would allow me to get some breakfast. As for lunch, a colleague shared a meal with me and I was well nourished for the day. After school, when I arrived at Castro Valley Yoga where I am an apprentice, my yoga mentor Nancy Leigh-Smith offered to keep my bike in a safe place instead of outside unlocked.

My boyfriend has an extra set of my house keys and after yoga I BARTed and rode my bike over to his house. I felt so easy and light without my bag and all the stress of constantly checking my phone for messages. The day made me realize how lucky I am to have great friends, colleagues, a mentor and a community that offers me support. Less possessions resulted in more kindness. It also gave me more empathy for the BART workers.