When I sit today and think about that trip, I still can't beleive I made it to a foreign land all on my own.
firstly I didnt ever beleive the trip will come through -secondly I was wondering if I will ever make it alone. AND I did - successfully.
I was all nervous, a little worried, a little excited about a long trip to a foreign soil alone and a weeee bit proud about the fact that I have worked hard to make this trip happen. Most of all I was confident my lord will take me through this trip without any hitches.
So I left the safe shores of Chennai on the 30th of january 2006 to Sydney, on my eleventh wedding anniversary. The travel to sydney was good - a little long, tolerable, boring at times - most of the time I was lost in my own thoughts.
I landed in sydney and called waterfront apartments and confirmed my booking. The place was interesting, people were friendly and warm and the climate almost like that of India.
I still remember vividly how I got down at Sydney airport and how I lugged all the box and the comp to the station and went to Paramatta station. And from there took a cab to waterfront apartments. was met by the service people there to my room and th next day I was at Unilever office, taking a presentation on " culture ".
Even while I was handling the sessions I couldnt beleive I was there doing this - was it the same little girl so unsure of herself some years back, doing all this???
My confidence, faith and trust in the lord grew by the minute - I had some one to talk to all the time, someone who would listen to me unfailingly and someone who kept affirming what more do you need in this world other than me.
This trip came at a time when I was emotionally beaten up, had completly lost all my hopes on life, felt helpless, felt cheated upon and had a feeling that noone cared for me. This trip was my lord's way of telling me, all these years you loved and looked forward to travel abroad and here I am presenting you a trip where we both, just the lord and me would go together for 2 weeks.
And hence every step I took, every session that I handled, every smile I received I felt good. No one will beleive this, but I always felt there was someone talking to me all the time, watching over me and someone with me all the time during this trip.
Unilever was a nice place - a quiet place. Time and again, I got into comparing India and that beautiful place. On the third day went to Sydney office and also to Nestle office and met my collegaues.
during my trip to Sydney visited the aquarium, opera house, went for the ocean drive under the bridge (cockle bay), traveled in cabs, local trains, buses, did shopping, window shopping, eating all kinds of icecream and enjoying life in general. Felt amazed at the creations of the lord, and generally changed my perspective on mother earth.
And it happened - almost like a miracle. It was a way of my lord telling me very explicitly " I love you my child ".
It was a saturday and I had slept almost till afternoon and I was looking for a church to attend mass the next day. Kept loafing around to find a church, asked a couple of strangers and then I kept walking along the beautiful shores of Paramatta river. and I saw a middleaged lady saying rosary and walking - she had flourescent green rosary. My first reaction was let me not disturb her rosary. And then I thought if I let her go I might not get to know about church and hence I stopped her and asked her for a catholic church. she looked puzzled and asked me how do you know I am a catholic. and I told her you have the rosary!!!
And she looked surprised and was quiet and then she told me, she normally brings in a gold rosary that goes unnoticed and that particular day she had the urge to pick up this bright coloured rosary, though she was wearing the gold one. And what made me feel so good was " the lord wanted me to show you the church and that's why he made me bring this bright coloured rosary" and I felt him next to me - hovering over me like a mother hen.
Her name was Lorainne and I went to a Lebanese church - sat through a rosary in lebonese and then checked with the priest there for a way to Catholic church and found the same.
Sunday morning I went for mass in the church opposite Waterfront apartments - all I had to do was to cross the park and reach the church and started to Melbourne.
Except for feeling lonely in the room in the nights, I began to fall in love with Australia, its people, the cleanliness, the warmth and lot of other things.
Took a cab and said a bye to sydney from Sydney airport while I left to Melbourne.