July 5, 2009

Day 2 Body of Water- Anger

We woke up this morning in Rock Creek, then took a morning swim in the Kettle River, one of my all time favourite swimming spots. What a wonderful way to start the day! Then we drove, and drove, and drove, fuelled by so many cherries that my belly is SORE! When we arrived at the coast we boarded a ferry to sail across the George Straight to Victoria BC. We had a strange, sad and frightening experience on the ferry.

Before boarding Michael and I were giggling, rolling around and being very playful on a the grassy patch which is mostly used for travellers dogs to relieve themselves. I usually explain to people that dancers can seem unusually cuddly, that we are used to playing and expressing ourselves with our bodies. Others can find this behaviour overt, they become uncomfortable. As I type this though I wonder if it is the dancing part of us which makes us this way, or the deeply compassionate part of us, that part so tapped into love that it shows up all over us, all around us? As we were being silly and having fun, finally out of the car after hours of driving, I became aware of a man in his mini van, spitting on the ground and saying “disgusting!” over and over again. I felt like it was directed at us, I physically felt the anger penetrate our playful bliss bubble. My mind though, being its eternal logical self, brushed this off. I couldn’t make sense of it; I mean why? Why would anyone be offended by what we were doing? Sadly my mind was wrong, my heart knew it was being judged. The angry man became more and more aggressive. I told Michael I needed to leave, I am very sensitive to this kind of energy. I would like to say I can roll it off my shoulders, not care what others think but this is just not the case. As we got up to walk away the man gave us the finger one more time with a huge smile on his face, I can only guess he was happy that we were leaving. I was shaken, and happy for the whole ordeal to be over.

We had planned to sleep in the car for the ride over the water but decided to go to the upper-deck first, to get drinking water. I went to the bathroom. As I came out I was washed over by a feeling which still makes my heart pound. Michael was not outside the bathroom waiting for me, I knew something was not right. I started searching for him, it was not hard, all I had to do was follow the yelling voice of a man filled with hate. A man who was saying terrible, violent things to Michael. When I came round the corner the man had already shoved Michael's face, sending him into a trash can. Something about my arrival had the angry man retreating, still saying terrible things, but less willing to be aggressive. I wondered later why this was, but was just grateful at the time. Michael was handling himself with composure and grace, staying true, in this moment of intense verbal violence, to his empathetic heart. He had removed his glasses because the man had already hit them, it was a reasonable thing to do, but I was afraid things would become more physical, that the angry man would take the removal of glasses as a sign of aggression. So I asked Michael if we could just leave, not try to work things out. Michael agreed. Then just as we did I spun on my heels, filled with a sudden rush of protectiveness, and asked the angry man to talk to me now. I could not understand what he was so angry about, I wanted to understand. What was it he thought was so “disgusting”? He refused to speak to me, he left. Later, in the car as we processed this experience, Michael wondered how this man could believed that what we were doing, or even what he PERCEIVED we were doing, could in anyway justified to hitting another person and telling him “Your lucky I don’t rip your throat out and throw you over board”?

All I can come up with is that this man saw two people experiencing joy, laughter and love, and that somewhere deep inside he wanted these experiences, these feelings more than anything in the world, realized that he didn’t know how, and instead reacted with the only emotion he could access. It is my deepest wish that this “angry man” finds peace, love and joy, and that he never attack anyone like he did Michael ever again. And since I am an optimist and believe that anything is possible, I am going to add...and so it is!

“What scares you about love?“ is the question in 12 days journal # 83


  1. I'm glad you are ok! ruthie

  2. I feel sick. I'm so sorry. Love you both.

  3. Crazy, the things people will do when angry. Anger seems to really unhinge people.

    What scares me about love is the power that it gives your beloved over you. But once trust is sufficiently built, that no longer scares me.