Amid the Raindrops

copyright David Stewart

Amid the Raindrops

After weeks of running, I found myself in Laos. Laos is not a path to anywhere, so I stopped.

My phone was off. No more dodging investigators, regulators, creditors.

I could live here, learn Lao, show tourists around, maybe.

Exploring my new country, I entered a temple. It was deserted and inside, the city faded away. Suddenly, I was alone in the universe.

It started raining. I saw in a cloister and just listened. At some point, amid the raindrops, the universe spoke.

When I got back to my hotel, I called my lawyer. “I’ll turn myself in,” I said.

I’m honored that Rochelle chose this picture of mine for the prompt this week, especially because this one has a lot of meaning for me. When I saw it in Rochelle’s post, it brought me back to that moment.

I took this last October in Vientiane, Laos, in a temple called Wat Sisaket. I was there for a few days in the middle of a work trip to Vietnam. The tail end of Typhoon Noru was sweeping over the country, so it rained the whole time I was there, although charmingly enough, never when I needed it not to: it always rained as I was under shelter somewhere.

I’m not sure how, but although Vientiane has about a million people, it often feels deserted. When I visited Wat Sisaket, I was the only one there except for two attendants at the entrance. It was very easy to feel like I was the only person in the world. While I was there, it started to pour, so, not having anywhere else to be, I sat on the wooden floor of the covered cloister that runs around the outside of the temple and just existed for a while, listening to the rain and being in the moment. I was probably there for half an hour or so before the rain stopped and I went on to the next place. Nothing happened, but it was one of those moments that has affected me profoundly.

Here’s a video I took while I was there.

6 Comments Add yours

  1. Loved the last line…

    When I got back to my hotel, I called my lawyer. “I’ll turn myself in,” I said.

    You have so many great photographs from your travels. I’m surprised Rochelle doesn’t choose more since she’s a pretty good editor when it comes to pictures. I always appreciate them.

    This FF was one of your best. 🙂


  2. neilmacdon says:

    See? That’s what happens with those transcendent moments. We make silly choices

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Dear David,

    I’d hoped you’d show up for this one since you so graciously loaned the photo to us. 😉 Great story…love the subtle way he received the divine noodge. Thanks for sharing the background and video.




  4. msjadeli says:

    David, I’m very glad you shared the origin story of the image. As soon as I saw it I knew it was someplace special. If you didn’t call your attorney when you got back to your hotel, I’d be interested in what the cosmos really said to you. Looks like the people of Laos have a liking for dragons. I wonder if the attendants live in the compound? No telling what they might hear at night.


  5. Thanks for sharing the backstory of your picture it matches your story.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yeah, I thought of various ideas, but I tend towards stories that mirror the real events with my stories, for better or worse.

      Liked by 1 person

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