Oasis between Purpose and Dream

Lead into the dry desert, white sand dunes as far as the eye could see. Hot, slow and hazy, time floats by lazily.

Within the Peruvian desert one comes upon Haucachina, a small village, surrounding an oasis. It’s not an apparition, instead it’s nourishing, promising and inviting. With palm trees glistening amongst the blue-green lagoon.

Laying by the pool with the sand dunes in sight, I thought to myself, in the heart of what seems harsh and fierce, there is promise and life. Like an artichoke, peeling away the layers to find this heart, once there it becomes self-sustaining.

Sand-boarding and boogying down the dunes, I felt like I was flying, the sunset in this landscape was breathtaking…


I traveled by bus from Haucachina to Arequipa. The old Baroque architecture set against the snow-capped Andes was beyond gorgeous.

Passing on the guided 2d/1n tour, I decided to undertake this specific hike alone, having heard it was easily do-able.
Heading deep into the Andes, I departed the bus at Cobanaconde at 3:30 pm, with a determined mindset.
Enthusiastically, I told myself

“I have to get my nature fix going and want to try it alone. I am going trekking down this mountain…to the oasis that lies at the bottom.”
I stopped inside a store to get my aqua and placed it in my 30 pound backpack. I was informed by the lovely lady at the store that it took 2 hours to get down.

“Solo?” The senorita asked, with a confused look
“Si” I answered back, innocently

I was left in the dark on any more info about it.

Excitedly venturing into the unknown, I told myself

“I know I can do this”
As I was heading down, others were coming up looking at me rather, um, curiously.

I was keeping a vigil on the sun as it was dipping lower, trekking down the rocky, dry desert mountain. I could see the oasis down at the bottom, a speck of blue…

Far, Far, Far from where I was.

“Ok, it’s alright, keep going, there is nowhere but down from here” I told myself. “My intuition directed this and I listened. I take full responsibility for what I create.”

Zigzagging down the steepest hike I have ever done, I kept thinking to “This is a test, of what I am unsure, but I will pass.”
I was half way down when the sun started setting behind the mountains.
“No panicking”
I told myself,
“I know I have been steered correctly.
Please, please, please let there be enough light to make my way down.”

I kept going.

and going..

and going…

It was getting darker, the oasis far, far away was no longer in my sight.
Twilight was fading, I was alone on the mountain.
I thought to myself “Should I just sleep here for the night.”

“No keep going” I felt in my heart.

I brought out my headlamp that was flickering and with a sense of fear-laced knowing, I kept going. I started stumbling in my footing.
“Holy shit, what am I doing, why am I doing this?
Am I an idiot?
Am I going to die here on this mountain?”

I sat down and started crying, second guessing every decision I have made, if I can’t rely on my guidance what can I rely upon?
I saw eyes of an animal looking at me as I turned my head. Coyotes howling, I cried out,
“OH MY GOD, help me!”

And from there I don’t remember a thing. As if some force came over me.
All of a sudden I was walking through the lushly planted trees.

Miraculously, I was at the oasis, so far from where I had been.
I heard voices and saw people eating. Tears came again to my eyes, this time in gratitude and disbelief.

I thought
I can’t believe I just did that, this was a test.
A test of perseverance and dedication.

I learned that even in the darkest of dark, there will be a light, always guiding.

As for the Oasis, it was electricity free with darkness obscuring the view, I awoke in the morning to see stunning beauty. Everyone else staying left at 5 in the morning, lucky me I had the place all to my adventuring. I enjoyed the day by basking in the beauty of where I was. I swam lazily in the mountain water pool that was emptied and filled daily.

Down in Colca Canyon, Sangalle Oasis was a dream. The mountains, massive beyond belief, were living and breathing with a flowing river in between.

Afterwards, I was duly informed that Colca Canyon is the second largest canyon in the world. It is twice the size of the Grand Canyon, two people died doing what I did recently.

Solo
!?!???!?!!!

SI!

The hike back up was just as trying, there were 3 others with me, one Scot and 2 Brits.
We became one another’s saving grace. Russ I had already met on the bus and the four of us made our way up. It was more difficult than anything I have physically undertaken, the desert sun was hot, the 30 pound bag I was carrying started to feel heavier and heavier.
This was no joke.
We were all hurting. It took 3 hours of stopping for water, trying to make it before it got dark. Half way up I couldn’t see the end, looking up at the looming mountain, it seemed impossibly daunting.
And I again reinforced within…

Keep going, keep going, take responsibility for what you create.

My faith in myself and my ability was tested enormously.

Sometimes, the road may feel like one can’t go any further, in a perilous place, and perhaps foolish, this is when an epiphany occurs.

The understanding was that I was always taken care of as long as I ask. There is always an oasis to surrender into, if I don’t go for it, I won’t ever find it.

Legendary and by far the most physical exertion I have ever undertaken. One that became an internal test, strengthening me in my ability, restructuring a belief system that used to be based on insufficiency..

I now know I can undertake

anything.

xo,
Nicole

Peru

From city to city connections were made.
An avenue opened up every place I went, with knowledge and inspiration imparted in some way. I found myself being pushed forward by an unseen force, with my internal guiding source.
In Panama City, I was drawn to the jungle for what I could not draw energy from within a city. Plants giving a life-sustaining force that I can only get high from in lushness of the green.
I was dropped off into a park, knowing that I would find a way out, not sure what way it would be. After taking my time and connecting to where I was, I resurfaced from the jungle.
It was getting late with no taxis in sight.
30 minutes from the city

I heard my heart tell me.

Be patient.

Patient I was, as I was about to start panicking, a man I had passed came strolling out of the pathway.
My heart told me to connect with him, so I told him my dilemma.

Would you like a ride to a phone? he asked

I felt only positive intentions.

Yes, I would

It’s fascinating that one chance meeting can alter the course of the rest of life. Connections and interactions that are seemingly random happen to be no coincidence at all.

This encounter turned into friendship, trust and appreciation. We were lead down rabbit holes of discussion, hours of disclosing life, liberty and the pursuit. Reaffirming that like attracts like, both of us pleasantly surprised with the spontaneity of mutual admiration.
same, same but different.

Peter, a graphic designer whose hand will be playing into my blog quite soon, introduced me to his friend living in Panama City, who on worldly levels is creating positive change, working for the UN.

like a sting of lights,
illuminating incredible people.
This introduction
connected me to

Callpa

in

Lima, Peru.

I was utterly alone in this city, and felt the sting of doubt entering my veins, until I was unsure of everything.
Doubt is an an evil archnemisis to creating, as it was seeping in, I felt my bubbles of dreams popping right in front of me.

ddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddd

If I can’t believe in my dreams, no one will do it for me.
With that I took all I could muster, and pushed myself back into knowing, the cornerstone for creating.
I will do this, I told myself, reminding me of my purpose.
As I shifted myself into perspective and motivation, a wave of relief came over me.

Soon after, a light appeared in my life,
this connection from Panama city.

We met at a coffee shop, he said to me.
“I can help you explore my country, come to my house and I will draw you out a map, what you are seeking can be found. I will help you achieve your dreams”

Trusting my heart, I went with him to his house.
Walking into his family’s beautiful Peruvian home, open-aired and exquisite, I felt a connection to the culture and family that lived within the walls.

Callpa and I sat for hours, connecting and elaborating on this undertaking.

again Illuminating my journey
Your last name is Luna?
I asked him unbelievably

What does Callpa mean?

“It is Incan” he told me
“Representing times after chaos coming back to the earth
not a line, but rather a circle.”

I understood, and spoke to him

“I know It is my purpose to help create this change in the world
After seeing what I have viewed, something has to be shifted drastically, we are ignorantly putting things first that don’t need to be. Our values askew, we turn blind eyes to what needs to be seen.

I see destruction ravaging this world.

How can something so beautiful, be destroyed so absently?

It hurts my heart! ”

I lamented to him.

He told me a story

“My people lived on these lands, and while they may seem simple, they understood them. There is a sacred mountain that you will visit, I would like you to know about.
The face of an Incan was carved into this mountain, when the Spanish came conquering and converting, dispelling the Incans belief system, they asked them.

“Where is your god, you can’t see him?!”

the Incans would point up to the mountain.
“Right there”

The spaniards laughing
“That is just a carving of stone!”

On the winter solstice, the sun would light up the face

“There is our god” pointing at the shadow looming over the valley.”

A representation of a belief system, that was irreverently destroyed.

Callpa adequately prepared me for my journey, helping me with what was needed….
I set off with my treasure map, knowledge of lands, and heart as my compass.

Trust is an intrinsic feeling, and beyond all the fear and worry conditions, in a foreign country, I have learned to trust my inner feelings.
I opened to trust, and created amazing friendships, the only expectations were guidance and connection.

Thank you for the amazing illumination, support and encouragement for my dream.

xo,
Nicole

Thank you Callpa for all of your guidance, hospitality and generosity.

Thank you also to Renatio for the ride and tour of Lima : )

Ayahuasca’s Femininity

You came beckoning to me in my dreams, I could feel your pull to come sip amongst your knowledge yet again.
Speaking in your powerful way, you said to me….

“Come find me, I will lead you to where you need to be, the right Shaman you will be guided to as I transform you.
Purifying you mind and spirit, I am a tool, one when used with the right intention will propel you forward.
Speak to me before you take part, everything will be drawn to you, if it is found easily it is meant to be”

Ayahuasca, a drink that is made from the vines of the amazon, powerful plant medicine, that shifts one into new dimensions within self. It is more feminine in nature and relates to the earth goddess. The traditions of this ceremony date back centuries, usually facilitated by a shaman. One drinks this as an undertaking that comes with reverence for the power of the medicine.

This is an absolute surrendering to whatever the medicine wishes to impart in one’s being, pulling up negativity and shadows to be viewed, and purged.
There can be deaths of self, and viewings beyond what the conscious mind can grasp, understanding of what lies underneath all the eeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee
mind chatter.

meditating

Peru,

I heard whispered in my ear,

Peru is where you will find me.

The energies of these ancient lands were calling me

Come to me, come to me.

I set the intention, the power of the mind being my one true religion. The visions I could taste and smell. These visions carried with them a weight beyond proportions of what I was grasping.

In them,

untethered by conditions and patterns of my world and society, even more sovereign in myself

I spoke back to her

Show me how to get to you…..

I will begin with the end, back to the feminine.
Callpa, a person, also representing
a circle, starting and ending in the same place.
a cycle complete
Death = Transformation

Within the being feminine the masculine action is born.
Action comes from being, being causes action.

My last and final resolve, owning my body and femininity.

Excursions of action and asserting my masculine, death of self experiences, with elements harsh, I am still processing the teachings.

Unbelievable.

Testing ever ounce and fiber of my being with
not giving up or in,
no matter what I am faced with.

Now

A softness occurs.
In this softness a nurturance of what I have undertaken.

A vacation away from an excursion,
back now in Bocas, circling, this time with renewed purpose, in that
I am
owning

who I am

With a superb teacher for this.

My aunts have been amazing forces in my life, guiding me with their knowledge, passion and strength.
I am being guided yet again, for the final teaching along this journey, by Laura, owner of Bocas Yoga. An independent, graceful, confident woman, she has become a soul-aunt, I am blissfully inspired. Staying in the guest room attached to the studio, a dream- space is giving rise to the cultivation of what I have acquired.
cozy room

Laura is Anusara Yoga inspired, living Shri,
universal principles of seeing beauty first.

I came here after mention of a photo shoot.
That photo shoot turned into an uncloaking of beauty so as to learn to share myself with the world.
Cultivating my beauty with grace and no longer giving a fuck what anybody thinks.

Fully owning, integrating and being proud of who I’ve become

“Shine your beauty out” I heard in one of the amazing yoga classes

Thinking,
How overly critical I can be of myself at times, expecting a perfection that is hard to meet, an over-worn, conditioned belief that my beauty and sexiness can only be had if I am over five foot three, a super-model or slutty.

After what I have faced and created, it is time to get rid of that bs and implement me, and MY BEAUTY into my being.
Re-patterning reservations from a brainwashed and objectified society.

I don’t need to be a c cup to feel beautiful.  Although it feels fun to have 😉
I don’t need to dress in Prada to know I am beautiful.
I don’t need to wear makeup everywhere to look beautiful.

My beauty isn’t what I look like, how I dress, what I drive, where I am or with who, those are all extensions of what is within.
My beauty cannot be found outside of myself, it is an inward state emanating out, it’s my light and my ability to radiate to all who are in my presence.
True beauty is the ability to love myself, own myself and be confident in how I represent myself to the world.
Trying to look perfect is a state of insecurity, my imperfections give rise to the greatest beauty of all

Uniqueness.

Extraordinary idiosyncrasies that are mine to claim.

It’s about intention, if I think I am beautiful, and radiate that with grace and action, to me that is truly living my beauty.

New-found Beauty has come with action, the action of integrity in

following
my
purpose and
dreams

unstoppably

xo,

Nicole

to be continued…..

Somebody, anybody, everybody and nobody in Colombia

Follow the signs, the signs will be your guide.
Listen for the quickening to know when to take action,
Like a puzzle the patterns will emerge,
all things falling into place as they should.

Lesson learned:
Knowing

In knowing creation takes place.

The night before I left Panama City, Sheena and I were sitting in our room having an intense conversation, looking over we saw a huge scorpion covertly making its way across our stone wall.
Sinewy and intense
“What does that represent?”

“Transformation”

I left on a chicken bus with 3 other Americanos from Panama City to Portobello, where we sailed onward from a picturesque bay.

I was synchronistically guided into this experience, after stating that I desired to sail to Colombia.
I dropped my key on the ground of the balcony at Luna’s Castle, while retrieving it, I was asked by a man with a strong english accent
“Would you like to sail to colombia?”
I would, but with different stipulations then paying 450. So, I became the cook, and made all members of the boat my guinea pigs for my cooking.
there were 5 of us on board, 3 americans, the captain, and I, chef Nicole.
We swam, ate, cooked, sailed and jammed out to 60’s, 70’s and 80’s along this 5 day journey, my first experience sailing.
I thought to myself,
here I am, on a ship in the Caribbean, sailing to Colombia.
I almost can’t believe it, along with others prompting and guiding, this has been on accord of co-creating with my inner knowing.

253722_1732472153255_7279942_nLuna, luna, luna has been my shining light, the signs illuminated with its essence

This passage was light up by the light of the moon, in my goddess compartment at the front of the boat. I slept under the pale, brightness as we made our way across the vast ocean. Nothing in view but the endless 2 mile deep waves that crashed against the boat, lulling everyone on board into a wavering trance-like state.
I sat under this light one night, from horizon to horizon nothing but the ocean, I contemplated the smallness of my existence.
Becoming one with what is.
Going within my own watery depths, it became internalizing and refining time for what lay ahead. Diving into my feminine, more passive and emotionally observant realms.

The moon brought up powerful surges of realization and a new capacity for understanding.
Sitting under it, the ocean sparkling with its light. The swells and waves rolling me side to side, fierce and calming

It made me think of all who have traversed across these seas.

the ocean an entity in and of itself, spoke to me

“So you think you know who you are?
Along this perilous passage, prepare yourself for your greatest adversary

Yourself

I will help you question the very nature of your existence, passion and purpose.
When you look upon me I suck you in deeply, emulate my waveform in your movements, crescending and flowing with life.
Fight me futily, for I will swallow you whole.
And under the moonlight, as you gaze upon me, make no mistake your roots were birthed within me.”

San Blas

222280_1707000396477_5099160_nSan Blas islands were unimaginable, 200 of them, paradise taken to a whole new level.
I kept asking myself, “Am I really here?”
Swimming from the boat to the islands in the clear blue water, time and place stand still.
With the rising and falling sun, days into nights into days, a tranquil, surreal existence becomes the norm.
After two days of not stop swells and waves rolling one side to side while
Sailing, sailing, sailing away.
we arrived in

Cartagena, Colombia

226605_1707002276524_4427891_n

Reminiscent of times past, Cartagena is a gorgeous city with an ancient wall surrounding it, like a fortress protecting the jewel within.
Once inside the old, intimidating walls, the heart of the city lies. One walks in and feels transported into another era, with merchants and fruit carts selling fresh tropical fruits, jewelry, bags, and trinkets of sorts. The smell of sweet bread wafting out of the panaderia invites one in to try the gooey, sweet goodness.
Dancers and drummers perform in the city center, traditional movements speak of fire, passion and energy. Invoking primal memories.
The architecture resembles old European cities, similar to Casco Viejo, but larger, cleaner and more activity.
Out of all the places I have visited I would choose to reside in this city permanently, there is a sense of culture here that is unparalleled from anywhere I have visited.
It is colorful, vibrant and alive with excitement, and colombian passion.

229076_1706994596332_1106532_n

Media Luna was where I was lead to stay (yes, luna again), it was a clean stucco, white spanish style structure, with a pool in the center, surrounded by palm trees and balconies.
It was social time in Cartagena, playing with friends I met in Panama City, others being newbies.
All of whom imparted their unique presence and gifts of self, fun, information, love and happiness. Laughing, light-filled nights and days within this treasured city.
I listened to music on the river, ate at morphing places that went from Colombian by day, and Indian by night.
Went out Colombian style with all the color and passion of this amazing South American city.

And I debated, should I stay or should I go?
My funds have been dipping low, and this is where I have had to know.
I am almost to my goal, my dream, and do I give up and turn away?
No
My sought treasure will be found. Some how, some way, everything will work out perfectly, abundantly and joyously.
In that I have to trust in the invisible and not let anything deter me from my course.

And so, I am where I have set my heart to be since I was 13, and it hasn’t been the easiest route.
Traveling alone has proved to be one of the most rewarding experiences, although at times it scares the hell out of me.
Arriving in this city (it’s a secret), I had an existential breakdown, questioning
Why am I here?
What am I doing?
In those breakdowns an epiphany occurred, reinforcing my purpose, keeping my eye on my treasure.
All I keep hearing in my head is
Let go and KNOW
Know?
And I remember, my heart will always guide me correctly.

 

I realized walking into a yoga class that I would not understand what was being spoken and would have to follow along. I have had to surrender to being a foreigner, at times feeling perpetually blindsided in a foreign city not knowing a single person (until now).
The ego takes quite a good beating in such a state of being.
I like it, it’s humbling.

“Let go of thinking that the world revolves around your expectant American way Nicole, and learn how to revolve around the world.”
I said to myself.

For I am somebody, anybody, everybody and nobody.

xo,
Nicole

 

Ciao for now, onward to Panama City

As it ends, so it begins

ever anew, better and better.

In search of a treasure.
A gift of unfounded beauty, a discovery within an awakening, soul diving and seeking for the essence of which becomes

self……..

A 10 hour ride through the night from Bocas Del Toro, to Panama City.
The bus ride out here was quite the trip.

After stopping twice and already transferring buses, we were stopped a 3rd time by immigration.
Walking onto our bus and asking something in spanish. We were informed they were calling a ticket number, for the luggage underneath.
Siete was all I heard called out, looking at my ticket, 1117, they were saying my number.
The only one called.
Uh oh, I thought to myself, did they happen to see one of my many different bags of white powder that I bring with me in my apothecary?
No, not anything illegal, rather, my baking soda, sea salt and borax that I use in my different concoctions for alkalinizing, which I am sure could be looked at rather….. suspiciously.
Singled out, I walk down the bus with a questioning grin on my face,
Down the stairs, over to three immigration officers looking in the luggage compartment.
“Is this your bag” they ask about my out-of-place, italiana, shiny, faux crocodile skin bag.
“yes” I said, with a smile on my face.
The officer looking at me, pulls the bag out and asks to open it.
“how old are you?” he asks
“twenty-eight” I said
“what are you doing here?”
“I am traveling and writing” I said to him
As he is asking this, he is holding my lacy, pink and black underwear in his hand, up for me and the other officers to see, with a slight grin on his face.
I am trying to hold in my giggles.
“how old are you” he asks again.
“twenty-eight” I said again
“are you a soldier?” he asks
“a what?” I ask him, unclear if I heard that correctly
“are you a soldier” he asks again.
I look at him to see if he is serious, then look at my girly bag, and underwear in his hand.
again trying not to laugh
“no, I am a writer” I say to him.

“Ok, have a good night, enjoy your trip”
he says to me, no longer hiding his full grin.

I walked back up, laughter escaping, everyone on the bus looking at me with curious faces, wondering what just transpired down there.

My segue way to Panama city began.

Panama city, Panama city, you boast of contrast and a somewhat thriving economy.

Staying at Luna’s Castle, it has been my first experience in a hostel.
Stepping out on the veranda, to view Casco Viejo, a part of town that models old, quaint european cities. Across the sailboat dotted bay, modern high rise buildings and structures make up the city.
An artistic, open, worldly vibe at Luna’s.
Within this place unique art and design is displayed, comfortable and busy, it all makes for a quirky party.
The club Relic is underneath, with the old stone,structure of the city, light up by dim lanterns, one feels transported into a different time period. Within the lush courtyard, it becomes a connecting with Americans, Europeans, Israelis, friends from down under and all over. Incredible friendships were formed.
The staff here is young and inviting, with a hip, cultural sense.
Amore to Luna’s Castle, you are the best place to stay affordably in the city, and have provided entertainment, fun and accommodations.
I will refer you to anybody traveling to Panama City.

I had been missing my souls beat (music) and wanted to dance, dance, dance in the city.
My intentions were set, and so out I went.
In search of the music, listening lead us to it.
On a rooftop, with the city skyline light up all around, it reminded me of Miami sprinkled with some New York central american style, an all together distinct flavor.
There were new sounds to my attentive ears. Overlaying latin drums and kicks, with a familiar bass and beat, I felt the sensuality come through the speakers, the sounds energizing and rich.

Meeting the architect of my favorite structure here, the owner of the club giving us whatever we needed.
We were royally shown a taste of the city.
Pure clubs, pure feelings, pure dancing in ways that were new to me, with panamanian energy.
I felt as though I was yet again, in heaven.

Always interesting to observe any group,
a part of human nature, I understand that….

Groups are quite the same.

Different people, of course, yet similar hierarchies.

“who’s who” means little to me,
how one treats people is much more important,
from special people, I was treated

with honor, like a queen…

thank you ; )

After being here for a week, I shall be sailing away to islands, to Colombia onward to the jungle, in search of a treasure (aya). I perceive that my journeys will lead me to it and transformation will take place on deep, deep levels.
Knowing that it is time to journey alone.
I am off.

A part of this for me, is separating myself from all of my normal reality, I will not be posting the next two weeks .

I will be back with what has become of all.

xo,
Nicole

Bocas del Toro

After leaving Costa Rica, I arrived in Bocas Del Toro, an archipelago of Panama,

Stepping foot onto this island, we were ushered into a tour office by Homer.
Homer took pride in being our guide and appeared to pop up whenever we needed him, carrying our bags, getting us taxis, leading us into adventures we were meant for.

Upon arriving in this same office, a picture on the wall caught my eye. One I remembered clearly, having seen it before.
This surreal photo was a brightly colored picture of Bali huts on clear, teal water, surrounded by the tropics.
Racking my brain for where I KNEW that picture, it came to me.
A dream board I had created a year ago.
Amazed, I had forgot I even made it. I was shown yet again how powerful the mind is.
I feel like living proof of the law of attraction, cheesily reminding me of “The Secret”.
Yet what seems to evade this book on the depths of attracting, are attracting from a space of doing what is for the highest of self and humanity.
Which is where I always intend to attract from.

 

My conclusion:
It’s the experiences and people who aren’t dreamt up, rather unexpected, that are just as extraordinary.
It’s about the journey as much as the destination.

I tend to shy away from the touristy approach, this time I embraced my heart’s wishes, and decided to go on the suggested tour.
Making our way to dolphin bay on the small water taxi,
hearing the engine put, put, put.
Then silence……. we were stalled in the water.
looking around there was nothing in sight but land, far away.

Really???
Was all I could ask
Uncontrollably giggling at these crazy twists and turns,
.
After 30 minutes of other tour boats coming over and laughing along with us, our rescue boat arrived and transferred us over to a new boat.

Wind blowing and whipping around us, the sun lighting everything up. We were finally taken to dolphin bay.
Intelligent and ever so graceful, these mammals are a sight to behold with their slick, shiny gray skin. As they were frolicking and following our boats around, it helped me to understand their message of breaking out of the adult box.

“Liberate yourself.
Be light, have fun and laugh with life, entertain the innocence and fun of your inner child.”

From there were taken to a restaurant on the water, where I ordered fresh fish, rice and plantain, that was prepared while we snorkeled.
Swimming within the coral, canvas shapes and figures like Fibonacci sequences, spirals, brain shapes, bright yellow, pink, and green coral were rising up to meet me. I was left mesmerized as the water captured the sunlight in a colorful, hypnotic display amongst the varying hues.

A dazzling allure.
Representing universal symbols prevalent in all of life.

After eating the delicious meal, we were taken to Red Frog beach.
I was expecting your average beach, a lot of people, stuff and hot dogs everywhere.

Instead, I was stunned when we walked through the trees to the most pristine beach I have ever seen.
The clear aquamarine ocean was softly rolling onto the white sandy beaches.
With uninhabited islands in view and the lush jungle encompassing. I was lulled into a romantic, soft and dreamy state of being. I blissfully fell even more in love with life.

I was beckoned into the jungle’s splendor.
Thriving junglicious life seemed to be murmuring and speaking to me through the leaves and trees.
Surreptitiously finding my way over to the off-limits, I ventured in.
Climbing up the mountain, the huge trees provided me with vines and ropes that I was grabbing and swinging on. Like a little pixie, getting my sundress dirty, I knew the jungle would take care of me.

Once up, I climbed precariously on a fallen tree for an unobstructed view of the ocean. Afterwards, meditating within the roots of a giant tree, ocean view and life surrounding me.

This was the essence I was seeking.
Life couldn’t have been more perfect in that moment.
Sacred, grounding time within nature, reminding me.

I am a part of it.

Total price of tour
20 Dollars.

Yoga, baby.
My body had been craving the stretching, twisting, release.
After putting my intentions out there to take a class an hour later a woman, Laura, walked by with a yoga mandala on her shirt.
Questioning her about it, she told Sheena and I to come by and check out her studio
Bocas Yoga.
The studio was a cute purple house, that felt warm and high vibrational, creating a comforting, strong space.
In all my yoga experience, this class was by far the best Hatha flow I have ever taken. Laura was a sensational instructor, guiding us into poses expertly with a nurturance to challenge ourselves.
I had my yogic release, things surfaced and were worked out of me, mentally, physically, emotionally and spiritually.
I will be coming back there, indeed.
total price of class.
5.00

Bocas, you will be missed and I shall be back

xo,
Nicole

Panamanian Pleasures

Panamanian pleasures enriching the mind, body and spirit.

Costa Rica was gorgeous and yet Panama has been tantalizing; the flavors, spices, and eye candy of the islands, dazzling one in a dreamy display.

The island of Bocas that where I’m on is tropical and quaint.
The tourists are the focal point. I have met people from all over the world, mostly Europeans and Americans in this hot spot. I was told by a local friend that 10 years ago there were only dirt roads on this island.

My experiences being of a dreamlike, magical nature.

I have to sometimes wonder if in fact…

I am asleep.

My taste buds have been exploding with the caribbean tastes, sweet, hot, fresh and juicy flavors that complement the tropical weather in this pacific paradise. The food here has been a source of exquisite delight.
Cooling and refreshing in the morning, I suck down fresh, locally grown papaya juices.
Invigorating my mind and body.
This orangey pink, slightly sweet fruit contains an enzyme called papain which helps break down proteins, a source of vit E, vit c and folic acid, I add in my own sprinkle of 5,000 Mgs ascorbic acid (vit c) as pep.
I’d love to harvest the succulent aloe leaves I have seen growing around and add into this creation, cooling and lubricating for the body.
Perhaps another time and place.

Pulling out my mini apothecary wherever I go, I infuse the locally grown coffee with 2 tbsns coconut oil and cinnamon, providing numerous benefits.
I have a theory, and I would like to run it by some skin specialists at some point.
In the past, being quite the gringo that I am, when out in the sun I would burn intensely without sunscreen.
Sans sunscreen, I have only been faintly red at points, quickly turning to a golden tan. My skin has been left utterly soft and smooth. I contribute this to ingesting coconut oil, aloe and avocados.

During the day I eat light, seaweed salads and greens with either apple cider vinegar or fresh lime juice for flavor. I am left with the vibrancy of these living foods, taking it in through all the cells in my body.
Ceviche is a new favorite of mine. Served chilled, this raw fish cooked in lime juices, cilantro and spices is a caribbean staple and the taste is incredibly tangy and succulent.
At night I pick up the pace with my meals, generously adding the local hot sauces to everything I eat, the peppers add intensity and spice, insatiably warming me up.

One balmy night while out with new friends while visiting a local bar with my travel buddy. No, we didn’t order a drink.
Instead we were feeling the need for an iodine/akaline fix, being the concoctioneer that I am, I pulled kelp out of my bag, asked the bartender for a couple of plastic cups and started mixing away, the fascinated bartender was receiving abundant tips
on sea plant life and detoxing. 😉

For more info on food sources described please check out these post:

Daily Additions

Remedies

Winter Blues
This journey is unplanned and random and I laugh because I asked to come down to volunteer and my volunteering has taken an unconventional route.
It seems I am healing and coaching wherever I go in one form or another, without expecting any form of payment.
In giving of myself to every person I encounter, whether it be with a smile, healing/energy work, health tips or generosity.
I intend to always enrich another’s life. I wish to leave each person happier, more knowledgeable and feeling more empowered than before our encounter.
Leaving each place a tiny bit better than before.

xo,
Nicole

I will post soon with more experiences.

Bienvenidos Panama!

 

Before I begin with adventuring

I would like to impart a thought.
This living my dream,
this is not just me…..
while my dream may be different from yours,
I ask you.

What are you passionate aboout?
What drives you?
What is it that your heart sings to, where time seems to not exist?

Seek out your dream beyond the societal constructs of norms and conforms.
Your purpose is to live your dream, and your dream reveals your purpose within it.
As conventional or unconventional as it may be
Go for it.

create your dream,
live your dream,
become your dream……

: )

First lesson of traveling for the day.
Ask.
On both buses on our way to Panama, there were occurrences that made me have to take the initiative by being assertive in the language that I know very little of. Both of these lessons in asking reminded me of the importance of body language.
Graciously, gracias and a smile go a long way.

I asked myself, what is the best in a sticky situation?
sit and feel annoyed and/or complain, or try to accept and tune out what is?

Neither
change is not created either of those ways….

In asking.
VOILA
I receive.

 

While in meditation,
I remembered,
its up to me how I am feeling about any situation
acceptance is the key,
one can also ask for what they desire,
although it may not always be.

Our day of bus riding was coming to an end, as it was getting dark
we were arriving to the border of Panama and almost as a disappearing act, everyone had exited the bus. My traveling soul sister Sheena and I, were the only two on the bus by the time we arrived at the last stop.
Sixaola
Thinking we were going to be able to cross the border as we had been informed, plans had shifted and it was not possible at night.
Looking around outside we both felt ill at ease.
To say the least.
hmmmmmm
Surrounded by what most would call dangerous, our driver had us stay in the bus while figuring out a situation for us.

Ummmm Hotel?
we asked in our oh so american way
This guide of the night looked at us, an elderly gentleman with care in his heart, and took us under his wing.
Driving us around in the bus, he took us to a nearby hotel and the young girl informed us.

No Vacancy.

Our vigilant bus driver would not give up, after stopping to say hello and tell his wife he was helping us, he then drove us to another bus driver.
There they brainstormed a way to get us not quite panicking, but definitely wide-eyed young american women to a place that was safe.
Over and over I kept hearing,
its all going to work out perfectly.

As this mantra was repeating in my head, a car drove by, the bus driver flagged him down and after speaking with him, informed us that this driver was safe and would be able to take us to a town called Bribri, 30 kms away.

there were no other options.
As it is in the flow, with intentions of always being guided, and knowing that I am protected….
follow the signs.

an amazing force was working with us.

We were lead to a quaint, homey hotel in the jungle.
and it worked out perfectly ; )

Back to the asking thing, I asked for adventure, and I realized
be careful what you ask for……
meaning
BE SPECIFIC
Ease and lightness are now a part of this adventure.

I asked to immerse myself in all of the culture of Costa Rica, and I got a flavor of its richness and warmth in Bribri. a glimpse that would not have been viewed if it weren’t for this apparent obstacle.
There was a familial warmth in the way life took place in this little town, as though everyone knew one another and took pride in creating a synergistic community.
Spending only a couple of hours here while waiting for the next bus, I liked the feeling I received from this place. While we were definitely outsiders, we were treated warmly, and with a smile, welcomed into this community.

Bueno

The rest of the way to Panama was smooth sailing, we had to learn the ropes of the lessons. Once in, Panama felt different, a new landscape presented itself, more banana trees and dry weather.
Crossing the rickety, old bridge with gaps as large as me in it, making friends with Norwegians, we made it through the border, taking a shuttle to the boat taxi to the island of….
Bocas Del Toro.
Finally.
The next post will contain some of the adventures thus far in breezy, tropical Panama.

xo,
Nicole

Central America

The adventure continues…..

Spontaneity at its best, unexpected twists and turns with connections being formed. Life moves, shifting us into a flow that at times is indescribable.

Riding on wavelengths that are redefining my existence.

As I sit here writing and learning spanish from a three year old, I will to the best of my ability describe the incredible exchanges that have taken place over the past few days.

Monkey?
Mono!

Feeling that it was time to move onto our next destination, we traveled by bus from the lush Caribbean jungle back to San Jose, a city of bustling energy, a place that has become a home away from home, away from home.

To find a new place to explore.
Remembering
Wherever I go, my home is within.

We arrived in San Jose and within the night decided to meet up with a man who DN had met on the bus.
Rod, a gregarious, warm hearted American from Idaho.
He was in Costa Rica for his project, a patent on blue prints of homes, to be built as part of Haiti’s new infrastructure.
The homes are brilliantly designed as part of a build-able, recycled structure, with solar panels and a central system including filtered plumbing.
On so many levels, this set up is in line with the wave of the future, efficiency and sustainability at the core of helping thousands of people have new homes.
We would like to help implement these systems when it gets going, giving our efforts to support rebuilding. Creating a new standard of what can be re-created from such a horrific storm.

A cataclysmic cyclical existence
at times horrendous and heartbreaking.

After hearing Rod play us some perfect Johnny Cash on his guitar, our night ended with a delicious dinner. All of us happy to have made this connection, knowing it will grow into greatness.

Thank you Rod, you are an inspiration….

The next morning, the fiery volcano was calling to us. With numerous active ones nearby, our options were abundant.
At breakfast we ran into a fellow Charly’s place tenant, the outgoing member of our crew striking up a conversation with him.

Dennis, who turned out to be staying there after the night’s prior football (soccer) game of the Costa Rican teams.
He is one of the national referee.
We all connected instantly.

Discussing our plans with him, he was telling us about the different volcanos.
We asked him if he’d like to go with us.
“I have to be back for training at 3:30, but I can get you an extremely cheap rental car and take you up and show you the rainforest and largest volcano crater.”
His other profession?
a Tour Guide.

It became evident that we were supposed to meet him as well.
Dennis has a huge heart, going above and beyond, facilitating inexplicable experiences and showing us what local Costa Rican life is like.
Becoming an instant hermano del alma
(he just typed for me “soul brother” ;).

Pure Costa rican salsa serenaded our quad while meandering through the mountains into the rainforest. Coffee bean plantations and strawberry fields were dappling the view.
We stopped to pick fresh, succulent goodness, the sweetness and sunlight filled us up.

We went to see the infamous crater.
Steam and sulfur rose up through the living rainforest, breathing life into our beings with the mist encircling us.
The laguna, with the yellow stones encircling the clear blue of the sulfuric acid.
A magical, ethereal feeling.
I felt the intensity and life of our surroundings, mother earth herself invigorating us with her consciousness. She spoke of transcendence and owning the goddess within.
A natural rhythm within this mystical place, coming before, during, and within human nature.
Billions of years beyond our creation.
So it will be, life will keep going, yet again within the cyclical existence.

I could stay here forever,
yet time to be moving.
Growing, expanding, evolving.

On our way back down the mountains, Dennis stopped at a locally produced coffee, wine and cheese store.
Before we stepped out of the car, employees ran up to us with samples.
Drinks?
Yes, please.
Coffee liquors, cream and roasted beans.

Bueno, Bueno.
Cheeses, and ample amounts of samples.
Incredibly delicioso.

Driving back down we all are grinning cheek to cheek, laughing and exclaiming.
Gracias, Gracias!!!!!!!!

Afterwards, Dennis invited us to come watch him train with the fellow national refs.

In the valley of the lush mountains, we were interacting with the Costa Rican national football team in front and the Chinese national football in back. Strolling by us with a confidence and ease of any high profile team, we nod to them, national news present.
we were posing as american “scouts and reporters”

Out of place a bit, but there for a purpose: to experience the extraordinary.

Sheena and I drinking the locally made wine we picked up,

as we watch mi amore get to practice with the national referees. (He was pretty good being a rookie)

Gringo, gringo!!!
They are lovingly shouting to him

Bonita guapa(?)
to us ladies.

I think to myself.

Amo la vida!

xo,
Nicole

So much more to post since this has transpired, I will get back to you in a few with where we are, and what is next.

Costa Rica

Yes,

We made it to Costa Rica!

Where I had been having dreams and visions of traveling to.
It was an adventerous 15 hour flight, and I was exhausted when we arrived.
We had plans to come to a Hotel California that is up in a town near San Jose.

Up on the mountain, from the front porch, I could view the volcano. It was lush, windy and surprisingly cool where we were.
With only screens in the house the strong wind was heard day and night, producing a melodic feel.
It became the perfect home base, to figure out where to go next.
After going to the local grocery (that was an adventure 😉 to buy food two nights ago, the owner of the hotel had gone and picked up other guests. As we were sitting there talking to them, we understood.

The four of us were supposed to meet.

A couple who both had left their lives and jobs to be in integrity with making new things happen for themselves.

Amazing, reminds me of what I did when I first left my life as I knew it at 26.

We had enlightening conversation, surrounding all that we were currently embracing and experiencing.

All of us could feel how right this felt, as though it was lined up for us to travel together.
Knowing that, the four of us took off from the more metropolitan, city dwellings of the San Jose area.

The bus ride here was quite the escapade, there were no seats and so we sat on the floor for 4 and half hours.

We arrived to a place I was envisioning.
Kristos’ 2 bedroom, wood cabin in the jungle on the Caribbean side, in a town called Puerto Viejo.
The ocean, the jungle, the beach.
In this warm, tropical paradise my heart is singing praise.
Life is about living here.

Letting go of the need to try to plan anything, I am perpetually fueled by the flow, and we are shown troves of treasures in the mundane in life.

I could hear the monkeys in the trees last night before falling asleep, their OOHHH’s and AHHHH’s were reminiscent of how I have been feeling.
If you would’ve asked me two days ago where I would be today, I would never have thought it would be writing in an outside cafe in the middle of the jungle, with the beach across the street.

Nevertheless, here I am.

I believe in my ability to create my dreams and that more than anything is what I continue to build upon.
With gratitude, love, joy and knowing, this continuation of the abundance of life is mind-blowing.

Thank you universe, yet again!

xo,
Nicole