Bornholm in April

I returned to Bornholm for a week. When I spent nearly 6 weeks on this beautiful island in winter, I was told that April is particularly beautiful with spring coming through the defrosted ground and trees starting to bloom. And yes, nature was full of abundance. Anemones covering the forest floor and wild garlic growing everywhere. My first afternoon I spent in a magical valley, sitting still on a rock in the midst of anemones looking for an answer to my sudden exhaustion that had come over me after arriving. I prayed a round of my mala and received the answer, to get up and move intuitively and slowly to free my body of some inner tension or some blockage, maybe caused by long sitting on the train and on the ferry the day before. After my little movement session I felt refreshed and clear again.
My friends’ house felt as lovely as I remembered it, lots of work done in the garden and preparing for more.
On my second day, I tried a little bicycle trip, enjoying the wind in my back on the way to the shore and then also along the shore towards the South. I would have enjoyed being pushed a little more, but I stopped to check how it would feel to cycle back to my temporary home. The wind was fierce. I decided to start cycling back immediately, smiling at my illusion that I won’t have to face up to letting myself be carried along. I cycled myself into a bit of a struggle, starting to wonder if I would make it back, certainly not enjoying the ride so much anymore. And then I remembered my experiment with the wind in November on Amrum. Back there I started interacting with the wind and for a moment felt like being one with the wind. So I started singing to the wind, humming a very simple melody, maybe four notes. Somehow it felt as if the wind was opening towards me, cycling became less strenuous, I felt like being in relationship with the wind, not fighting against it anymore. I was still tired in the evening, but somehow happily tired, having learnt an important lesson I feel.

On another day I reconnected with a new friend I had made in winter and we went for a little tour to the North of Bornholm, walking along a valley to a waterfall where masses of wild garlic were growing, looking at rock paintings possibly many thousands of years old and venturing into a cave. Seeing the wild garlic inspired me to cycle to the same valley again the next day through foggy landscapes. I collected a few bundles of the wild garlic and processed it into pesto in the evening.

Another highlight were the times with my tree friend, a beech tree I had found in January and which was featured he on my blog before. One morning before breakfast was particularly beautiful. The tree’s first green started to come out on the very top were it’s twigs stretched towards the sun. Again I found deep peace and solace here. One evening, a little shaken by what had happened, I came to my tree and had the impulse to connect to the spirit of Bornholm staying close to the tree at the same time. I asked how to find peace inside and it felt like the island was offering herself to me completely. I received an image of myself as a giant body, a little bigger than the island and I was invited to lay down on the island, soak up all its vitality and wholesomeness while letting my feet and hands tangle into then water. This brought instant relaxation and peace to my body.

Then another beautiful bicycle trip, taking most of the day, including some resting in the sand in the South of Bornholm, watching the swans nearby. Inbetween deep and sometimes healing conversations with my friends, meditation, proof reading of a small booklet, getting a little more proficient in working with my new tablet, finding useful apps and finally putting use to an external keyboard, that I had bought months ago.
Amazed by the power of Bornholm again, the island seems to be able to take in whatever one brings, ready for transformation, and providing nurturing at the same time.

Most of this I wrote while being ferried over the Baltic Sea back to Germany, on a sunny and quiet crossing with few other travellers as the tourist season is yet to begin on Bornholm. Once I reached the habour of Sassnitz, I cycled into town, had some lunch and boarded the train to Kiel. A few very interesting conversations on the 5 hour train ride and reading in my lovely book. The book feels precious: ‘The Lady and The Monk by Pico Iyer. It is about his trip to Kyoto in the late 80s, beautifully describing the Japanese culture, funny intercultural encounters, his fascination with Zen, and Japanese poetry and it is about love. Reading it often makes me laugh out loud, even on the train, or feeling very touched. I would love to share a part which touched me in particular and which is about connecting Heaven and Earth. Here it is:

‘Increasingly, then, as I went on reading Singer, I began to see that the great project of this closet pantheist was, quite literally, to build a rainbow bridge between heaven and earth. Again and again, his robust tales turned around men who wished to renounce the world in favor of some unearthly, abstract love – a devotion to scholarship, or even God – and then, of a sudden, found themselves confronted with the presence of something less lofty that seemed to betray a higher source; again and again his people were divided, their eyes on the heavens and their hands on earth. And invariably, Singer resolved the issue by showing that the earthly love could be just the manifestation of heavenly love, that it revealed to us a radiance and a beauty that were otherwise concealed; that this was all we could know of heaven here on earth, and all we would need to know. “The more we know of a particular thing,” Spinoza had written, “the more we know of God.” ‘