By Leona Thomas
In 2010 I worked in the Nepali town of Damauli. Many ex Ghurkha soldiers live in the area so the cost of living is high. There are no taxis because most families have at least one car and several motorbikes.
It is super hot in Damauli in the summer. They say it's like having 3 suns in the sky. They're not kidding! It is not a good idea to walk far in the heat even with a parasol for shade...
But I was a visitor with no transport of my own so I was waiting for a ride.
When the school accountant arrived on his motorbike I began to look for my shoes. They had been outside the house because the culture does not allow anybody to wear outdoor shoes inside a house.
In fact, my shoes had been propped against the wall for about 2 weeks. As I went to put them on I remembered an incident from my time in Thailand.
I told the accountant how I had been volunteering at an animal rescue centre. We would ride the elephants into the jungle where we would leave them overnight and then we had to walk home.
It was a journey of many miles and I couldn't wear flip-flops because they hurt my feet... so I was carrying my shoes in a plastic bag.
One day I tipped my shoes onto the ground and was astonished to see a huge frog sitting in one of the shoes! He jumped out and escaped into the bushes...
The accountant and I were both laughing about the story but it didn't occur to me to check if there was anything hiding inside the Nepali shoes...
You see, back then I still was learning about how the universe communicates with me. My angels and guides were trying to get my attention but I was enchanted by the story so I missed the message.
We set off on the motorbike- down the dirt road, over the small bridge and then onto a tarmac road climbing steeply up the hill... it was slow work with two adults on the bike. Nepali motorbikes are not very powerful. There are no Honda Goldwings or Harley Davidson's in Nepal...
All was well until we neared the top of the hill.
Suddenly I felt something wriggling around my toes inside the left shoe!
I yelled at the accountant to stop the bike and managed to get off safely despite the steep slope.
I tore at my shoelace, untying it as fast as I could. Then I yanked the shoe off my foot and bashed it hard on the floor.
A fat black beetle, about 1 inch long, fell out and then scurried off down the road.
I hope he was grateful for the ride. I must have saved him many footsteps. But if I had been paying proper attention to my guidance I could have left him at home in his own neighbourhood!