Sunday, September 28, 2008

Pyramids

At one of our GNO (Girls Night Out), one of the gals related that when she visited the pyramids in Egypt it was a life changing moment for her. She visited the pyramids in her youth and had spent the night in one of the pyramids. It sounded like a sleepover, and in my mind I saw a chamber with torches and perhaps bohemian dancing with seductress music.

“How did it make you different?” I asked.

She said, “I went in as one person and came out as someone else. It was the most spiritual experience I have ever had”.

And in my mind I then scratched out the bohemian dancing and music visual but left the torches glowing as if it were a candle lit vigil.

I tucked that bit of knowledge and visual away in my mind thinking one day I may use this information for a life changing moment of my own.

The opportunity to visit Egypt came up at another GNO when one of the women I work was looking for a partner to go with her on her tour. This trip would include the pyramids and I said "Yes!"

Another one of our co-workers gave us some advise, “Make sure you go inside the pyramids. That is the one regret I have is that I didn't take that opportunity". I was sold! This is something I am going to do! I was hoping I too would have a life changing moment!

In this photo you can see the people queuing up to go inside the pyramids (the tiny dots of people in the lower left corner. Yes, the pyramids are that big!). There were a lot of tourists who wanted to have the experience of being inside the pyramids.

Perhaps you can also see in this photo there are signs all along the queue that say something like “if you have heart conditions, can’t crawl, or if you are claustrophobic, are afraid of the dark, if you usually need air to breathe, or are thirsty….GOOD LUCK! Oh, and don't even think of suing!" Or something like that.....

Anyway, it did not look very promising, but hey, if your life is going to change, you probably should expect to weed out the wimps or there must be some struggle, right!?

The closer I got to the pyramid entrance I observed the people returning from their experience. They were gasping for breath, looked scared, withered, and were clutching their chest, or heaped over and could not stand. I started to hesitate, but hey, this can be my life changing moment....I don't want to pass up on something like that!

By the time I got to the pyramid opening, I looked down the steep pathway and saw a narrow hole in the rock. I could see that to get in you had to bend over and scrunch your chin close to your knees and walk like an upright turtle. And so, that is what I did. And then it became dark. And then VERY dark. And then it was as if there was no air. Many people reversed their decent and went back up the path to get outside. Some people collapsed and fainted and others had to pull or try to carry them out. A few of us persisted and continued down the path. Eventually we arrived at a section we could stand. This area was lit. We then entered a room that was not much bigger than my office at work and in the middle of this room was what had at one time been a sarcophagus. The walls and floor were all plain dark stone. There were no carvings. There was no Egyptian art. It was just an empty stone room.

I walked around the airless room with the others who also succeeded in getting here. I felt nothing, and was rather surprised. Someone commented, “so this is it? Hmph.” And then we started the reverse process of scrunching our body up like a turtle and climbing up hill to find the exit and air.

When I crawled out of the pyramid opening, I too, came out sweating, gasping for air, and bent over with my joints fixed in a crunch position. This had not been a life changing moment for me. I realized that we are all different and as a result all have different life changing moments. Mine seems to be centered more around the little things....like watching a sunset, or smelling the ocean air, or seeing the 49ers finally win a game. Those are my little moments. And they are all near my own back yard!

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