There is no box

While in Shanghai, I had followed my instincts and persevered to reach Puxi on my own and ran into another spirit on the Pudong waterfront, Dr. Jean Pegouret (French Dr., engineer, linguist, free spirit, part-time Shanghai resident). Jean was a complete stranger to me and yet we ended up spending the whole day together, walking in Puxi. He spoke to me about the country, the city, the customs, culture and couture and surprised me with his fluency in Shanghainese, as he joked with the local people, ordered food at a restaurant and spoke to the metro officials to sort out my ticket situation. I was pleasantly inspired by Jean’s giving nature. He gave me his time, energy and spirit, so freely and had such a great attitude about it. Little surprise we had so much in common – a wanderlust, a comfort and one-ness in an “alien” surrounding, music, writing, very similar thoughts on spirit, philosophy, intellect, connectedness, progressiveness nature, freedom… It did not matter that he was French and I was Indian. Back home in the evening, I was narrating the day’s adventures to my parents and spoke about Jean. In an attempt to understand and place him in her head, my mom’s first question was “What’s his job?” true to the philosophy of her generation and cultural background. I just think Jean’s spirit embodied much more than what “job” he held. Such people have transcended materialism and have an almost ethereal approach to life. They may not fit in a box, but I feel like they are ahead of the majority in their spiritual ascension.

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