Thursday, March 18, 2010

Leaving these fields for India

I thought about re-posting my support letter for the sake of time until I realized that I would be defeating the true purpose of this blog (and only at the second post!): to serve as the deciphering and interworkings of my thought process throughout this journey towards faith in what I cannot see.

So...speaking of leaving these "narcotic fields," I will be leaving for Manali, India, on April 8 and returning on the 20th. I thought I would address the background of this whole shindig a little bit:

Last fall, upon returning from a summer of teaching music in Pennsylvania, I began seriously considering the idea of putting money back to spend a month in India. My daydreaming consisted of living and working alongside of two dear missionary friends already stationed there and spending a considerable amount of time studying the native music of that region. I have always wanted to study ethnomusicology, either independently or through a graduate program, so the idea of visiting friends, leaving the country, and embarking on my first ethnomusicological endeavor seemed like the perfect plan.

It was around this time, of course, that my heart began to direct itself (or be directed, however you see it) elsewhere: towards living in a city again and the higher likelihood of having music-related opportunities that didn't include being a music minister or a music teacher in a public school system (no offense, non-cities). Of course, the opportunities started showing up unexpectedly and I didn't feel that it would be the wisest decision to ignore them. So, as you've probably guessed, I put India on hold to move to a city and pursue music.

Fast forward to a month (ish) ago. I get a call from my good friend, Justin Brock, asking me if I want to join a team of people headed to Manali for the month of April. My first response? "What's the cost?" When I was given the answer, I immediately shut the trip out of my mind. There was no way I could come up with that money while transitioning out of a decent-paying job to a much lesser-paying music teaching job. In addition, I was content keeping India in the backseat for a while longer if it meant I would be pursuing what I loved.

Sometimes you get the feeling that you should be somewhere doing something. It could be completely random, so completely left field, so far from good rationale. But the idea just grows and grows and becomes completely unignorable. I tried to shake it, I really did. But it didn't take very long for me to realize that this was a place and a time that I needed to be a part of for whatever unknown reason. I always find it amusing when you leave an idea or dream behind, find contentment without it, and it still finds its' way back to you when you least expect it. I mean, not only will I be working alongside of those same missionary friends, but I will also be given opportunity to teach and assist in music projects in the orphanages and schools there.

So here I am. Gearing up to go to Manali, India, in a couple of weeks. And I am ready for whatever is unknown to me now.


  1. I really like these posts, friend. Keep writing! Both Adventure and Non-Adventure await you....


  2. Let me know if Haley helped any. I wish I was going. I may have missed my last opportunity to see India (a lifelong dream). I'm outta work, I guess if i found a good group to go with, and could scrape some cash together, I could technically go. I hope you have an enriching experience!

  3. andy - you are an encouragement to me always, my friend...i needed the reminder that non-adventure is just as necessary as adventure (and that non-adventure in itself can be an adventure!)

    thomas - i hope to be in touch with haley soon and i will keep you updated! thanks so much...