Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Marrakesh.. Magic!

Sometimes days are days and sometimes DAYS are DAYS.. Today was one of those DAYS!!  If you know what I mean?


It's hot!! I mean HOT!! 122 degrees hot.. I have never felt such heat in my life.. Ok.. Enough about the weather.

It's been 7 months (and some change) since I started this around the world journey. Since the beginning, I have (mostly) refrained from shopping (been wearing the same pair of shoes for 7 months and if you know me, that's a feat).. I just have my backpack with a few pieces of clothing and my computer. I believe life is a bit simpler without a lot of things... But now I am in Marrakesh and coming to the end of my journey. Marrakesh is a neverending artistic shopping haven. Soooooooo... I decided to go shopping with a mission, a beautiful handcrafted leather bag. Wandering the magnificent souq, I came across shop after shop with the same leather bags.. They were nice and beautiful, but I wanted something different.. At one point, I turned down a little windy lane and there was a small small shop with 2 men working on leather bags, I walked right by it, but then turned around and came back. There was something different about it, the energy was different, the people inside were calm and the bags were beautiful. So, I went inside.

I saw the bag I wanted and then another one and why the hell not.. 2 more (gifts of course). I sat with the artist (Hamid) for a bit and chatted, he was a bit aloof, but super nice. And anyway, I like aloof in this kind of situation.

 We started to chat a bit more, he offered me tea and then another man came, we all continued to talk, at some point during our conversation, I asked where I could buy a guitar. They then wanted to hear my music, which I happened to have with me.. So they listened and listened and frantically started running around trying to find a guitar. It was so cute.. To no avail.. We didn't find the right kind of guitar.. Oh well.

Each place I go in the world, I like to connect with the ancient traditions still alive and here in Morocco, they have a lot of superstition.. So yesterday while I was wandering, I met a man selling hair oils and creams made from argan oil and I ended up sitting with him for about an hour, we talked of many things and he told me about some of the superstitions in Morocco. At that point, he pulled out his little jars of herbs and spices and put together a little mix for me.. Good luck for my business, good luck for my family, etc... Today, I still had the little plastic sack of good luck in my bag, so I asked the leather bag artisan, Hamid, if he could make me a tiny leather pouch to put it in...As soon as I pulled it out of my bag.... Everything shifted.. He started to glow with a grand smile and suddenly took my hand and started to read my palm.. I couldn't believe it (as a similar thing happened in Thailand, read here).. He was soooooo happy about my little treasure bag, he immediately made me a small leather pouch and made it into a necklace for me to wear around my neck.

I ended up spending the rest of the day with them, sitting and talking and I even lead them through a short meditation in his shop in the middle of the Medina. It was amazing! They were so kind and I can't believe he read my palm. He told me his family has been doing this for generations. He invited me to stay with his family in the mountains.. So, I may do that.

I ended up buying 4 beautifully artistic leather bags with 100+ year old berber rug inlaid.. Wow!! Another magical day on the road.

Monday, July 16, 2012

French Road Trip

Can it be?? The magic of travel does not linger, it is busy tapping at my heart now and forever.

Barcelona was a wonderful few days of catching up with old friends, eating yumminess, writing songs and.. and.. of course a little bit of cosmic encounters..

You see.. I have this funny way of bumping in to people..

I arrived in Barcelona without a plan, except to meet one of my friends, which after a day of miscommunications.. We met.. It was fun and wonderful spend time with her and her family.

Then one night I decided to go to a concert. I was sitting listening to the music and I looked up, a friend of mine from Bali was there. I couldn't believe it. I had just seen him in Bali 2 weeks before, but heard he had left to go to France.. So there he was in Barcelona, at the same concert as me.. We laughed and laughed.. I mean, it is quite hilarious, as he had just decided that morning to drive from France to Barcelona to visit some friends.

I asked when he was going back to France and he said, on Monday.. I asked where he was going? He told me.. And I asked if I could have a ride.. And he said yes.. I needed to be in France on Monday night and he just happened to be driving where I needed to be.. So, he and I and another crazy gypsy, got in his 1971 VW bus and had a super fun time driving the tiny winding roads through the French countryside.

I love it!!

Saturday, July 7, 2012

the journey continues + new music

The journey continues... I'm in Barcelona now.. It was a crazy long journey getting here.. I had found a good priced ticket from Bangkok to Barcelona and at the time thought it was a good idea to go for it.. after that journey though, I think I may pay a little more next time.. I stayed up all night on the full moon of July 3 and left my beautiful Balinese villa at 3 in the morning.. It had been a long stressful day, not knowing until 10pm if my jewelry would be finished or not.. Holding on to the faith that it would, it was, and I ran home to finish up my last minute things.. Returning my scooter, organizing what I was going to leave in Bali and what I would take with me, packing etc.. Deta, my friend and driver arrived at 3am and we drove to the airport.. Day 1 of no sleep.. I flew to Singapore and spent a couple of hours in the airport and then got to Bangkok in the late afternoon that day.. For some reason, I decided to take the train and try to find my guesthouse by foot.. I did.. but it was feat and I was super tired and super sweaty.. I hunkered down in my dingy room and pondered my next move.. Food and a massage.. Not all bad.. One night in Bangkok has it's benefits, for sure.. As i was getting my 'foot massage' it started to pour rain and as I walked out the door I wobbled my relaxed feet back in the warm tropical downpour.. ahhhh.. Refreshing actually.. Went to bed early not really knowing what time or day it was and set my alarm for 5:30am, got up, showered and took a taxi to the airport. From there I flew 8 hours to Moscow, spent 4 hours in the airport and took another 4 hours flight to Barcelona.. phew.. Talk about long haul.. so many days.. no sleep and little food.. but i love it..

I got to my sweet little hostal in Barcelona and had the best room in the place overlooking a beautiful plaza. I arrived at midnight and decided I had to have a glass of spanish wine (who needs sleep when there is good wine?).. So I went downstairs to the hopping restaurant and sat alone and drank a glass of wine. The table next to me was full of people and they invited me to join.. So i did.. turns out they were musicians.. We connected and shared our music with one another.. I love that, wherever you go in the world, there is always music.. And it is such a magical way to come together.. They inspired me to get my music out there.. Some of you may not know, but I sing and perform and write music.. So.... I just put one song up on Soundcloud, check it out here and let me know what you think (and if you like it share it with others)... I recorded this with my friend in Bali in April..

Today is my second day in Barcelona.. I am with some friends and we are going to the beach.. After 7 months in Asia, Barcelona is a perfect transition for me being back in the west.. A little Mediterranean sunshine, yummy food and beautiful people and good friends. 

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Those final moments... flying again..

Those final moments…. I travel a lot.. It’s my guiding light in this world, connecting with people and cultures while diving into the divine unknown. The wonders that exist on the other side feed my soul and make me feel whole.

3 and a half months. I didn’t expect it. I thought I would stay a month and move on, as I’m pondering my departure in a few hours, trying to stay calm (while still waiting for my jewelry to be finished), I realize this is the longest it’s been, in years, that I have not gotten on an airplane. 3 and half months in one spot.. And the beauty of it is.. Bali may have captured my wanderlust soul. I don’t feel like leaving and know I will be back as soon as I can. Wow!!

Transformation has happened here, an energetically powerful land. There have been moments of big expression, artistic and emotional. My mind has evolved, I’ve met amazing people, designed and made jewelry, wrote music and performed, connected with the land and the people here. Enjoyed a slice of paradise on this globe and found my way in place where you better watch out what you ask for.. because it will happen.. in good ways and not so good.  At times it’s been difficult to stay grounded as I have major FOMO (fear of missing out) and want to do it ALL.. Somehow here, it ALL happened, in such a short time!! And I am thankful and blessed in this life on earth.. I am feeling nurtured, supported and loved as I journey on to the ‘other side’

Nearly 7 months in Asia and I am headed to Barcelona, France, Morocco and back to the states in mid-August.. Full power gypsy style for a bit.. It’ll be amazing and I’ll keep you updated.. on it all..