Throughout this mornings yoga and pranayama practice, I watched as the sun began to peak from behind the clouds. It has stormed consistently for the past three days, and I have enjoyed every moment of it. The rain brought with it these gorgeous whips of low laying clouds that crawled over the mountains in waves throughout the day, winding tendrils through the trees and around the mountain temple spires. Breathtaking, really. So after a quick breakfast of fresh fruit and hot lentils (very tasty), I joined a few other classmates in a walk to the local coffee spot. The scenes along the way were fantastic; Rishikesh is a town straight out of a child’s storybook, with big blocks of brightly painted colors and curls of metal staircases and door handles. It’s a magical place, a similar sensation to being in Big Sur. We reached the coffee shop, which was wonderfully full of prayer flags comfy floor cushions, but I could not give up my exploring adventure so I parted ways with the group and continued on my own. A short distance from the coffee shop was a large gated archway, it’s surface chipping away orange and green paint. Not particularly a welcoming entryway, but I went through anyway as I could see a pathway leading through several other similar archways and disappeared into the jungle mountain trees. I passed a donkey, a wedding, a group of school girls, (all heading the opposite direction) and finally found myself alone on the winding path. It took me through an abandoned hospital and then to a towering, rusted iron gate that was locked but which had a small door that was swung open, just big enough to climb through. My adventure continued up a windy cobblestone path with cozy homes on each side, like a scene straight out of The Shire. It was somewhere between here, where the path meandered into a denser forest and was void of any homes, and when the path rejoined the main town again, that I felt overwhelmed with love and gratitude. Love for such a magical place, seemingly bringing into existence everything I’ve always dreamed about. Gratitude for being given this opportunity; that the universe really does know what it is doing and I am always taken care of, even when I cannot see it that way. I am deeply deeply grateful. Even more so, I am happy.