Archives for posts with tag: tarot

Sooooo this is my first post of 2017  and yet its been a (mostly) good year. There has been so much to <3, I am just out of the blogging habit ( hint, hint Sarah.) So I am going to cheat a little and make this post a list of ALL the things that I <3ed so far in 2017.

  1. My attempt to make read more a habit seems to have stuck. Reading more has also meant that I am reading more widely,  including genres like Fantasy and Self-Help and even classics ( like “Wuthering Heights) that I had spent a life-time ignoring.  I feel like reading not only brings me great pleasure but it also continues to help me slow down, think more deeply and empathetically and of course , it’s a cliche but yes it makes me continue to learn and stay curious about the world.
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My Goodread reader challenge as of today! ( I am like 6 books ahead of schedule!)

2.  I started the year with a new year party (at my sister’s house) where I did tarot readings for everyone present ( including an assortment of my sister’s friends.) My mother once told  us as children that the way you start the year ( your mood, your behavior, your attitude) tells you what the rest of the year will be like. I think it was a pretty transparent attempt to get us to behave well but it’s kind of stuck with me as a superstition and I do make an extra effort to do something good or brave or special on days like new year and my birthday.  In this case it’s been a good year for me with Tarot, I get a lot of requests from people to read and I even “came out” at work and read from everyone from my boss to the lady who runs the canteen to I think every single member of the IT team! I love that I don’t have to advertise and offer readings as much  as I used to and that I no longer tell people I am ” just practicing.”  I also love being able to help people think through issues and dilemmas,  a friend (Katie Alexander) once called tarot “cheap therapy” ( she meant it in a good way)   and I think she was on to something there.

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The spread ( both tarot and other treats) at my sister’s new year party.

3. Since I moved back to Bhutan I have hardly traveled and only left the country once ( to go to a commercial town in India just across the border). Part of its has been  a money issue and part of it has been about feeling stuck and feeling unworthy and unready to not be stuck. When my sister decided to have her baby in Sri Lanka I told her almost immediately ( without thinking about how the heck I could afford it) that I would go down and be with her until my semester started. My parents, who for the last few years have been begging me to let them buy me a ticket somewhere for a holiday , jumped immediately and bought our tickets before I could change my mind.

 

Before going to Sri Lanka in February, I also landed up agreeing to go on a work workshop to Samtse, a part of Bhutan that I have never been to. It scared me a little to think about going and I barely knew the other guy from my college who had been nominated to go, but I had already decided that 2017 would be about getting out of my comfort zone and this was a HUGE leap out of my comfort zone. And as these things do, it paid off. I learnt a lot. I meet a lot of new and interesting people. I got to know someone from my college who I had not had much opportunity to interact with before. And I explored a part of my country that was less familiar to me.

 

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Samtse.

I think the success of Samtse made me ready to expect the best in Sri Lanka. It was a perfect baby-steps holiday for someone who hasn’t traveled in a long time. We were staying with my sister’s parents-in-law in their huge and comfortable house.  They had a car and driver to take us around and sometimes even insisted that a Bhutanese medical student ( many of whom study in Sir Lanka) go along with us to act as a guide/chaperone . Sri Lanka itself felt wonderfully unhurried after the frantic energy of Kolkata. We shopped and visited temples ( lots of holy places for Buddhists) and ate yummy seafood and relaxed and relaxed and relaxed.  The trip reminded me both that I CAN travel and that it can be pleasurable. Also my sister and I traveled so much together ( as boarding school girls  we once knew Bangkok airport like the back of our hands) and I realized that this was our last trip together before everything changes for my sister. So that was bittersweet.  But I think you can ❤ things even if there are not 100% happy.

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At the beach on my very last day in Colombo. ( I also started wearing dresses and skirts a lot more after this trip- I had forgotten how much I loved wearing them)

4. Sarah and I used to throw epic Oscars parties, first together and then when Sarah moved to DC separately. An important part of the these parties was the Oscar’s pool where everyone uses a ballot to record who they thought they would win in which categories. Last year I persuaded my siblings that we should do a pool too and being competitive and movie buffs it was a lot of fun. There was a LOT of trash talking! This year we were in three different counties but I managed to convince them to do it over google docs. Everyone put in their votes and then we watched and chatted over messenger throughout the ceremony. It made me so happy to still be ” together” for the Oscars despite the geographical distant. ( And there was again a LOT of trash talking)

5.  For the last few years I have been teaching sociology and occasionally political science classes. I have been okay with what I teach  but I do miss anthropology so I was so super excited when my college asked us ( there are two other anthropologists working at my college) to start the paperwork necessary to propose to the University  to start a BA in Anthropology! Bhutan’s first! We are not 100% through (yet!) , Bhutan has a very complex. extended approval process but we got through first 2 of 3 steps so it starting to look very likely (Fingers crossed) So ❤ that I could be getting ready to teach the first batch of Bhutanese anthropology students this time next year and I am super super proud of the hard work that has gone into getting us this far.

6. And the thing I ❤ ❤ ❤ the most in 2017 is the arrival of my niece CZ on April 24th.  I can’t even really explain in words how much I ❤ having CZ in our lives. I worry a little bit that with all of us rearranging our lives around her needs she is going to be super spoilt but for right now none of us can stop telling her how beautiful she is or stop taking photos of her. Our phone memories are overwhelmed!

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So a friend of mine owns a bar where he mostly serves friends and relatives.He has good cocktails, a nice relaxed vibe and far too few customers. So on a whim I came up with a promotional event for the bar that I hoped would bring in some new customers. I would give a free tarot reading to anyone who bought a cocktail. (Now I have never charged for a tarot readings so  my tarot readings are always free but lets not get all technical here!)  If you know me, you know that this was not completely a “goodness of my heart” type offer. I love reading tarot and am always looking for opportunities to read for people.  So really it was set up to be something that was good for both my bar-owning friend and me.

My brother made us a lovely image to use. We made a facebook event and watched with delight as people committed to coming.  My friend brought more olives.

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And then it was the 12th and my sister and brother came with me to sit up a table in the corner of the bar, with a fun lamp. I started at 8 pm with my first reading and didn’t take a break until midnight after friends had repeatedly come by the table to ask ” Are you okay? Do you need another drink?” I was so engrossed I hadn’t noticed  how long I had been sitting there. I did notice a small fight when one group of vocal girls started to get pushy about whose turn it “really” was.  By the end of the evening I had done readings for nearly 30 people. I had reassured people about their love lives, their career transitions and their business plans. I got lots of hugs and free cocktails. For the first time I actually didn’t just enjoy doing the readings and talking to people but I actually felt like I might be good at it.

 

I loved being tarot queen for the night and would totally totally totally do it again in a heartbeat.

 

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I bought my first deck of tarot cards nearly 6 years ago after an expensive and unsatisfying reading by Mrs Rita, a Tempe tarot reader with a HUGE sign outside her house  and a song by the Gin Blossoms. I left the reading thinking ,  ” I bet I could do better.”  Six years later  after a lot of practicing on myself, my family  and anyone else who would let me,  I am not sure if that is completely true. Learning to read tarot is challenging and I wonder if I will ever master it well enough to charge someone a cool $50 for a reading. But I have come to enjoy the on-going  reading and researching and practicing that is learning to read tarot.  I have grown to love the complexity of trying to balance between remembering the symbolism and meaning of each of the 78 cards  and trying to tap into and trust my intuition. I get a thrill from the energy of a good reading, few things feel as good as good reading.

I have a standard spiel I give people before I read for them about my belief that I am not predicting the future, I am mostly just reading the tension and opportunities of the present. I tell them that they have the power to shape their own futures.

Recently a friend of my sister decided to stop dithering and take the plunge and take up an arts fellowship type  opportunity because of something I said in a reading. He just came home and brought me this lovely stationary set as a thank-you. It made me so ridiculously happy.  So maybe I will never be paid it cash but perhaps I can start charging in stationary. Either way I look forward to my on-going tarot journey because the rewards are so much in the process and I love that, I really really love that.