Years ago, when I was backpacking near the Himalayas in Sikkim, I met a man. His name was Marshall. He had been traveling for several months all over Nepal and settled near the Holy Lake Katchipuri where I was also hauled up for a week’s stay. He was soft spoken, stuck to himself mostly, and had a sort of zen quality that the other guests mistook as self-indulgent, but I knew… I could feel his God-centered-ness. His sense of belonging. Perhaps it’s because I was becoming that way, too. I was far away from home and yet I had never felt so at home in my life. Traveling had widened my horizons and both beat me down and built me back up all at the same time.
I’ll never forget what this 45 year old college professor from the United States, Marshall, told me one fine day in the rolling hills of Lake Katchipuri. He said, “You’ll learn a million times more traveling than you would spending a million dollars on graduate school. Save your money and see the world. That is where true education is.”
I value education, in all forms.. but what he said really resonated with me, and I continue to learn from those places and people I encounter all over the world. You are my teachers, both land and tongue… and I thank you, from the bottom of my swelling heart.