Last days in Portugal before going...home? Well the place I called home for the past 4 years. Whats the definition of home?
I like it here in Ericeira. Its a surfer town, quite cute, one hour North of Lisbon. I cooked for friends at their yoga and surf retreat center.
Tuesday is gonna be my last leg of this round the world trip. And there is still so much to see!!
I am not done traveling!
So I am back in Europe. After 5 months and 13 flights.
I took the overnight bus from Oaxaca to Mexico City (no sleep), then spend 8 hours at the airport of Mexico City, flew to Orlando (watched Coco) where I had to rush through immigration, check-in and security to catch my onward flight to London (again no sleep but watched The shape of water and Three billboards - great movies!!) , Then spent 6 hours at London Gatwick until i flew to Lisbon, arrived at 7 pm, caught a taxi to the bus station, got on the bus to Ericeira, got picked up by the taxi driver and brought to the yoga hotel of my friends where i will stay the next weeks. Finally a bed!
Completely jetlagged the next morning, woke up (more or less) at 10 am and stumbled through the day.
But all good.
Back in Europe. A few weeks in Portugal now until back to Spain.
So together with Elodie, the French girl from the hostel, i took the bus to Mitra and from there we jumped onto a colectivo truck that brought us on a pretty bumpy road to hierve el agua, a calcified waterfall with mineral wells to bathe in. The water was refreshing, the views amazing and lots of visitors around.
More pyramids! Took the bus to monte alban, the pyramids near Oaxaca City. Nice!
And more strolls through town, exploring the markets, streets and little cafes, and trying to celebrate st. Patricks day in the irish pub without guiness..
Oaxaca City for the rescue!!
Thank God! I was thinking already i was the only person in the whole world not liking Mexico. But i was simply in the wrong place. Huatulco or La Crucecita was simply a very low vibrational place with nothing going for it. Well, for me. It is a place if you want to be at the beach, and drink in the evenings. No healthy food place, the beaches were not that spectacular either, and i realized (finally) i am not much of a beach person anyway. Oh well. I studied a lot, i meditated and did energy healing on myself.
But i still had become increasingly depressed. I realize now there are simply places that are vibrationally low. Huatulco is such a place. India was supehigh vibrationally and resonated with me. Same with San Francisco!
Anyway. So i finally took the 8 hour bus to Oaxaca City, and I feel as if a heavy load has been taken off my body. I feel happy again and back in love with travel, and als in love with Mexico.
Oaxaca City is super nice! Beautiful town, not too big, not too small, lots of markets, food stuff, organoc markets, cultural life, nice people (unlike in Huatulco where thr boys from the fruit shop always called "perra!" when i passed by - which basically means bitch), and glorious weather, sunny but not too hot and -thank god - not humid and sticky. I was so tired of huatulco.
So i explored the town with a girl from the hostel, ate nice food, saw the churches and parks and just soaked up the good vibes.
I haven't written much lately, apologies. I was busy.
The busiest I have been in ages actually which is funny considering that I am not traveling at the moment, and neither working, But I am catching up with myself. I am studying, researching and reading sooo much at the moment. My passion. All about natural healing, self-growth, and basically just all that matters. It is challenging and awesome at the same time.
I am renting this little room in La Crucecita, Huatulco for a month, and spend most of my time here. Sure I go to the beach or for hikes here and there, but mostly I research, read and study, and try to find my purpose and mission in life.
It can be frustrating, and I know if I chase it too much, it won't come, so I try to relax.
I kind of find my way to God too. Ha. Very personal story of course.
I learned already a lot here. Many lessons. Overwhelming at times. Then I have to remind myself to step back, otherwise I become the nerdy weird professor....well I am already.
But I have goals again. Some sense of purpose. Some new views of life.
This searching, this longing has always been inside of me, but now, without distractions, I let it out full-blown.
I still don't know what will come out of it, and I booked my flight home on the 20th of March.
I am looking forward to my home in Prado, even though I don't really have a real home there at the moment. I feel, the journey will further unfold when I am there. This takes time and patience, and trust and faith.
A part of me is sad and worried that I spend so much money on traveling, having to start from scratch again, that I was so egoistic and decant just traveling, enjoying and focusing on me-time. But the much much bigger part of me knows it was sooo very necessary and I got so much out of this journey.
I am exactly where I am meant to be. All is well.
Oh, as for La Crucecita: It is ... nice. ok. Still, Mexico didn't really win my heart, I don't know what it is, but I should have listened to my gut feeling maybe telling me this when I was checking in at the San Francisco Airport. I didn't have a good feeling going to Mexico. But in the end, it is fine. Maybe the perfect spot for doing my stuff, because there are no other distractions. I met one nice guy here, and we connected a bit, but for the rest I just spend my days in solitude, which is great.
It is hot and sticky here. I had expected the big National Park right next to the town to be a lush tropical forest but it looks more like Germany in autumn, all leaves have fallen - well, except that it is super hot It hasn't rained for months here (unlike Prado where apparently it has rained and stormed a lot. Well they needed the water!).
There are some nice hikes in the park, and some beaches, and I guess lots of other things one can do here but as I try and keep it as cheap as possible at the moment, I just do my thing.
After a last dinner with Tim and my foodie friend Rahul who was in town, I hopped on to an overnight flight to Mexico City! I arrived super tired at 5.30 am, and took a taxi to the apartment of my friend Thea (it really helps having friends all over the world!). I napped for another hour in her bed while she was doing her morning yoga, and then headed out for a quick stroll around the neighbourhood. In the afternoon she showed me around downtown and we ate yummy stuff at a market. I might have been underslept but Mexico City didnt win my heart at first sight, ha ha. It certainly is rough.
the next day I discovered a magical hot chocolate place though and everything looked lovely afterwards! :) I also went to the chocolate museum afterwqrds! In the afternoon i went to the anthropology museum as recommended by my foodie friend which was super good but overwhelming too. After a little walk in the central park we headed to an art exposition and had dinnr afterwards with some of Theas friends. The food was amazing, and finally i discovered my love for the mexican cuisine. Who knew you could prepare corn in so many shapes and forms!?
The next day I took the metro and bus to the Teotihuacan pyramids outside of the town. Wow! It was impressive. I had been to the exposition in san Francisco just a few days ago and it was amazing to see those pyramids and actually climb them (exhausting too! But of course it was just because of the altitude, not a lack of fitness!! Ehem).
The afternoon was rainy so i just chilled at the apartment. We prepared some food for a birthday party the next day. Which was sooo mexican!
So they had chartered a proper travel bus for all their friends and drove us to a refion of the town in the South where you can rent boats. Party boats so to speak. If you know Prado del Rey, it is a bit like the Romeria but on boats. Floating vendors sell food, and we had lots of wine and mezcal on board. At the last stop i got off with a few others, just to see that the boat took off again, with most of the people continuing to party. I waited at the bus for their return, and we went home and watched netflix, knackered :)
Then it was my last day already in town! We had great Sunday morning street food with tlayudas and tacos, followed by hot chocolate and another art exposition! Oh how i love cultural life!!!
In the afternoon Theas friend came over and we had some curry and chilled.
It was fun staying with Thea and having a bit more city life, but now I am also looking forward to some time on the beach and most of all: time for myself and sorting out my future plans! In the end I chose to go to Huatulco, where I will stay for a month in the little coastal town La Crucecita. Nothing special but a big national park nearby, seems a laid back great place to make future plans.
I know! Time for a new post! So it's been two weeks in san Francisco now and i freakin love this town! Once again, its a shame my camera is absolutely shitty so i i didnt take many photos but darn there were tons of opportunities to take some! I was super lucky with the weather too! Sunny and dry most days.
i walked through the presidio park to the Golden gate bridge and walked half way over.
I explored the Golden Gate park.
Tim, who hosted me so generously in his amazing and beautiful victorian wooden house in central San Francisco, took me to several hikes. We went to Marin County north of San Francisco, and to Lands end and did a long walk along the beach. We also drove further up to Cloverdale to visit his daughter.
we went to a great jazz club and had several really nice dinners and lunches out.
He also took me to Rainbow Store - probably my favorite favor on Earth :) its like the biggest health food store with the greatest variety and almost everything in bulk. Anything you ever wanted as a health nut!
Though even whole foods blew my mind! I loved it so much, i spend more money there in a few days than in a whole month in India i guess :o
I got a free cupping and acupuncture sessions from one of tims friends which was amazing!!
We did a boat trip on the bay with one of his friends! Soo cool! Drove past alcatraz, the golden gate bridge, saw lots of seals and had an amazing view over the city.
talking about views - this town has the most amazing views all over the place! Wow!
I had a nice dinner with another friends friend who took me up to Twin Peaks afterwards.
I did a yoga class with yoga to the people!
I went to the farmers market in the ferry building - heaven!!! So much good produce! And a gluten free bakery! I must admit, i pigged out here a bit, but where else can i can vegan gluten free cinnamon rolls, bagels etc!?
North Beach with cafe trieste and the stinking rose that claims, they season their garlic with food :)
Chinatown. Coit Tower. Fisherman's wharf. Oh well. Very american, but lovely.
Went to Berkeley to see an energy healer, and another time to meet up smb from the San diego retreat. He showed me around (Indian Rock - amazing!!!), Great Mexican food, and my first visit at a Kava bar! Very cool :)
Been to the cinema twice with Tim - such a luxury compared to my Spanish countryside life. The disaster artist - funny movie! And Call me by your name - boring in my opinion. But cool cinema, with food served to your seat (proper food, not only popcorn).
i also had a reading from a psychic :)
I got a bit sick a couple of days from a gluten accident but other than that really enjoyed my time here. Its such an amazing town, with so much nature around! I soaked up all the cultural life (haight street!) And inspiration i could get.
Only problem really is you spend a lot of money (despite the fact that my accommodation was free and i often got invited for meals!!). But yes, its a consuming culture.
Next will be Mexico! I am excited!
On to a 30 hour journey! From India to America - is there a more drastic change?? The time difference night and day too, 13 hours. I was preparing myself, usually I am good with jetlag. The first leg of the journey was from Bangalore to Hongkong where I had a layover of 7 hours during daytime. I was considering checking out the town but then decided to rather chill at the airport, go through my mails and relax. I grabbed a coffee at Starbucks (exceptionally! I had given up coffee a year ago but this was part of my jetlag strategy! The trick is to stay awake most of the journey and then when i arrive at my destination in the evening I am so tireed I can fall asleep easily andmy body is in the nght and day routine. The coffee was soooo goood though I must admit!!),had a little lunch and explored the many shops at the airport, using the opportunity to move my legs.
the next part was from Hongkong to LA, and somehow I was so calm and relaxed the long journey didn't bother me at all (must have been all the meditating, or I am simply getting used to all these flights). I watched a movie, dozed a bit, read, and then we were there! I needed to go through customs here although I had another flight to San Diego a few hours later. Luckily all went smoothly, and I hopped on to the last past of my trip. Finally I arrived in San Diego, tried to connect to the wifi of San Diego airport to order me an uber (unsuccessful), ended up taking a taxi to my motel, checked in, took a loooong hot shower and fell into bed.
slept okay although I woke up every three hours but all in all not too bad.
The next morning I had my first American breakfast at a place near the motel. Everything looked so cliché American!!! Loved it!
Got picked up at noon by the guy leading the retreat I was about to join in San Diego.
The next days I spent at a super luxurious villa in Escondido at a mindblowing retreat with amazing people. I won't write more details about it on this site because it was all quite intimate.
Finally on the 21st I got again on another flight and made my way to San Francisco where I am staying with a good friend. I am loving it already, especially the massive variety at the whole food stores (or Rainbow store). Mindblowing and overwhelming!
what a change coming from India!!!
So I spent a whole month in Tiruvannamalai :) the original plan was to travel around the South of India, Tamil nadu, Kerala, Goa... Haha. I couldn't leave the holy mountain and tiru that quickly.
I spent my days going to the ashram, listening to the vedic chanting, reading and reading, having conversations (or rather private satsangs with these wonderful people here from whom I learned soo much!), Meditating (me! Meditating! Effortlessly! Craving it!!). The last days of my stay there were daily talks at the ashram by Nochur which were amazing! I meditated in the morning, went to the talk, afterwards met with my friends for a chai or breakfast, then in the afternoon continued reading and studying, buying fruit, having ayurvedic massages, visiting the temples... There is nothing to be done in Tiru, and still so much is done.
It is a magical place.
But in the end it was time for me to leave, so I took the bus to Bangalore, which was dirt cheap and super easy and comfy. I literally had no problems or issues during my whole stay in India! And i know, that is not he norm! So I felt very blessed and at ease there.
Bangalore was great too. Everybody there uses uber to get around so that was super simple. I met up with a friend from my time in Bali 6 years ago. She still lives there and she is a super creative soul who writes songs and sings, draws cartoons, has a podcast etc etc. She did a whole month of workshops inBangalore so I went to her workshop in a funky community center. The little group of Indian girls and me did some drawings and paintings, and afterwards we had a nice lunch at a yogi cafe. Bangalore seemed such a modern town. I never felt overwhelmed by the traffic, noise or smell. I guess even India is changing.
My last day in India I spent on my own, wandering around bangalore, visiting Cubbon Park, and eating yummy Indian food. Then I took an uber to the airport and had to say goodbyw for now. I will be back though! There is so much of India I still want to see.
I am super grateful for this first intro I got, probably in the holiest place of it all. Thank you Arunachala!