Workaway Round 2: Japan

10338687_10100226658336961_6487626720708170609_n My success with workaway experiences is beyond my imagination, and there are still so many opportunities available. It might be a little premature, but based on my track record, workaway attracts a certain kind of individual, both host and guest, that epitomizes the essence of traveling and trying new experiences. I find volunteering while traveling a highlight of every adventure, just like couchsurfing, you are instantly introduced into a new culture with friends and a network that often bring you fabulous new experiences. This time I am helping in a Japanese/Vietnamese cafe a few hours train ride from Tokyo, Japan. Yaizu is a small town in which it would never have crossed my mind to visit, but it isn’t the local attractions that grab your attention, its the wealth of open minded and well traveled Japanese people that will end up making this stay memorable.
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I happen to have hit the traveling jackpot, being dropped into work at a little cafe in which the owner and clientele form a well rounded network of interested Japanese who wish to share various kinds of experiences with me, the foreigner.  Oddly enough, I have met a fair amount of foreigners already in this small town, mostly of the ilk who have married into Japan and now live here as their primary residence. It may just be that I am 8 years older than my last visit to Japan, but everyone seems to take my presence as quite normal, often starting off in perfect Japanese as I should be expected to know the language.  This is quite a difference from the last visit, where being a foreigner was more of a rare experience, and perhaps has to do with a maturity level that shows clearly on my face. This grouping of people however, mostly speak at least two languages if not four, and have traveled about as well as I have. The feeling about the place is like a grouping of friends living the small town life, but each bringing something interesting to the table.
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I recall saying an interesting thing in regards to work versus play when quitting my job two years ago; I would be happy to sling noodles in Japan and not call it work, because it is a new experience for me, and that is play. It’s strange little thoughts and desires like that, which you might only be saying off hand, which the universe always finds an interesting way to answer. I find myself laughing because each day the number one dish being served is pho; Vietnamese noodle soup. While not what I imagined, it is what I asked for.  As for other kitchen skills, I am now a master of spring rolls after having done well over 100 of them. No more the sloppy, lightly rolled behemoths I started with, they are well shaped, firm and dainty.
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While the learning curve for Vietnamese food isn’t very strenuous, due to my love of food and working in the kitchen, the language curve is. Thankfully my host intuitively understands how to speak Japanese to me and also speaks much better English than my level of Japanese. She has me interacting with customers from day one, and after I release my fears of speaking English or messy Japanese, I am getting along quite well. Every day a new friend comes into the cafe for lunch and I get to introduce myself and use as much communication as is possible, mostly listening, but answering when I can. Of the many friends who visit, a few expand my experience by taking me out for various things.
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One day, I got to attend a tea ceremony practice session, kimono dress up and all. Watching a tea ceremony is great, as long as your legs don’t hurt too badly from sitting on them, but watching a teacher instruct students on the proper movements and etiquette is well worth attending.
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I was able to attend an after school program for the ubiquitous experience of playing with a bunch of over interested kids, wearing me out playing soccer and tag.  There was a house party where everyone got to make okonomiyaki, the Osaka famous pancake. There was a ramen fest going on in the next city, Shizuoka, and I sampled these delicious variations.
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I visited a yoga studio for a free class and my first kirtan, complete with a harmonium for the real Indian musical feel. Oddly enough I never experienced kirtan in India, the joyous chanting of Sanskrit, something I feel a bit remiss about and will remedy soon. Along the musical avenue, I was also fortunate to be in town for a djembe concert put on by the owners of the yoga studio.26c7bee0_original
*Photo by Dai via Air BnB, Visit Here
I was also fortunate enough to meet a new friend, Dai, who owns a traditional Japanese home over 90 years old.  Dai is also a world traveler and English speaker, who uses air bnb to rent out half his property to entertain excited guests, and also works in the numerous bamboo forests, cutting 50 foot tall stalks. I was happy to visit his home and experience the beauty of this traditional cabin, if I may use that word. We were also so like minded that we surprised each other by stating we will be visiting Mooji in Rishikesh at the same time this February for the wonderful experience of darshan.
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I was also lucky enough to be here at the right season for something wonderfully fall, and close to every Japanese heart; Inekari, the fall rice harvest. Once the rice has gone through the laborious process of being sprouted and planted, the mature plant is then cut down and hung over bamboo to dry. Traditionally this was done by hand which I experienced, but modern technology has produced the combine which goes to town cutting and bundling together the rice while you walk behind it.  Its a family fun event which makes the work a lot easier with friends. There are all kind of bugs whose homes we are destroying so the kids have plenty to do when helping is no longer fun. Catching frogs, grasshoppers, and playing in the mud seems to be fond memories of many children in this country. With the help of about 15 people we finished two small fields which each produce about 120kg of rice. Each field is enough to feed two people for a year when only eating rice, or perhaps 3 now with bread and noodles included in the diet. It was a beautiful day that truly felt like fall to me and an experience I am grateful for.
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I would be remiss if I didn’t share my honest experience which has made this workaway something truly special. While everything I have done as part of my volunteer experience has been everything a workaway experience could be, I have been gifted something more. There is a special energy about this particular cafe, and in truth, stems from the owner.  Haru-san, my wonderful host, has a special energy about her, one of tremendous joy and mirth, laughing constantly all day with many smiles, even while working long hours.  This is slightly askew from the typical Japanese personality, but like everyone I’ve met through this cafe, people are a bit more open and ready to share themselves. I find myself overwhelmingly excited to wake up each day, not knowing what new experience will be offered to me today, but certain that much laughter, dancing, and smiles will accompany it.  It is this overwhelmingly simple joy that surprisingly catches us both off guard and from which we begin our relationship.
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*Haru is on the right
Having been a couchsurfing host for over 200 people, I am well aware of my feelings about this type of thing in a host/guest type relationship. It has always been my private understanding that as a host I never initiate anything because that would violate the unspoken rules of providing an emotionally safe space for my guest. I am also aware that many hosts and guests end up together for various reasons which rely heavily on their mutual feelings, something I have not experienced till now. However, a guest is free to do as they please and honoring my own beliefs, shared my feelings with my host because they were honest and I would have done so no matter the outcome. Strangely enough this wonderful and busy woman, whom for her own reasons has not had time or inclination to start a relationship in recent years, surprises herself and says yes to me. This obviously changes my workaway experience in quite large terms, but I honor the ways in which the universe works and for the opportunities in which new experiences of all kinds may enter my life.
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Traveling is exactly this experience. Setting your intention to go somewhere and then allowing the experience to unfold before your very eyes. It includes all those little voices of desire in your mind, and with hindsight, find that what you had asked for, was neatly wrapped up in a joyous experience you could not have planned or predicted, because originality is the joy of being surprised. As its been often said, letting new experiences happen is the key to joy. Anyone can plan a perfectly well organized vacation and pull it off, but you won’t really experience something new and worthwhile. This is key for your life lesson, let go of control, be vulnerable, and trust in yourself that whatever happens you can respond with your whole being and it will work out for the best.
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Wandering into uncharted territory; the foreign relationship.
For your very own adventure please visit http://www.workaway.info and check back for more experiences soon.
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Wrapping Up One Year Of Travel and Learning

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I find myself where I started one year ago. Looking at the same Kansas City skyline that I left after selling everything I own and heading out into the world. The view may be the same, but I have changed and along with it my interpretation of even that skyline. I touched down in 11 countries, made countless friends, deepened my understanding about myself, and learned lessons that will shape the course of my life. My understanding has shifted and thus I view the world differently, yet, I am still uniquely myself. This is perhaps the great conundrum that all world travelers experience. We go out and are literally changed by our experiences, see everything differently, and still the essence of who we are remains. You can come to a deeper understanding and acceptance of that essence, but no experience is going to just up and change you into a different person. I always thought there was going to be something out there that would flip a switch and I could become that person I envisioned inside my head with all the perfectness. The truth is much simpler, you are already that perfect person and only our thoughts and beliefs hold us back from breaking our boundaries and living the life we wish.
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*Iceland was by far the most beautiful place I visited and will be visiting again.
This was a year to find myself again. I didn’t know that I even needed finding, but when faced with daily experiences of discovering your authentic self, it becomes clear exactly what you don’t know about yourself. Meditation was a prime focus of this travel and I spent 10 silent days in a Vipassana retreat, twice, and 4 months in India with the teachings of the enlightened mystic Osho. If I can boil all the meditation down, it would be enjoy your life every moment, celebrate, be present and  alive no matter how you think you feel, learn to live with your inner silence and uncomfortable feelings moment to moment without running away. The essence of all the teachings is actually the practice in reaching that state of being, and then learning to live there. When you can stand in the place of silence and just look at yourself, you can see a body having experiences and thinking thoughts and still that isnt You. Then it becomes perfectly okay to have experiences and not cover them up or distract yourself from them. They come and go and still you remain just a step outside of it all; happy and aware.
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*Traveled the Swiss Alps by scenic train
I came home to an exciting burst of energy, seeing old friends and making new ones, wedding events, and family time, but what surprised me most was the lack of reverse culture shock. Unlike going to a new culture and being surprised by the differences, reverse culture shock is returning home to find that the world you thought you knew looks very alien. Instead, on this trip I’ve had a reverse personality shock. I don’t know where I belong anymore or what I should be doing. There is no home or job to anchor me, no meditation practice or community other than my friends, so I find myself in a city I’ve lived in for over 4 years and have no idea what defines me anymore. I attend the same events during the week with the same people I knew, but somehow this shows me most how this last year has changed me. I am looking for my place in the world and I know I can never settle for something less than what I’ve experienced. At the moment that is the delight of living in a meditation community, which I plan to return to before the year is over. In some ways it seems like I haven’t achieved much, because there is nothing to grab onto, but really the differences are all on the inside and those are the ones that really matter. Upon returning to Kansas City, everything here has moved along at its normal pace, but it is no longer my home.  I see clearly there is nowhere to go back to, only forward, to find the right place and way for me to live. After all this traveling, and traveling I am certain to do in the years to come, I am even more dedicated to finding my place and developing something amazing.
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*Climbed mountains in Germany, and could see the surrounding countries
What strikes me most about the changes in my life is the difference between what I have to call normal life and the new way of living that I’ve experienced. Normal life is perhaps the daily routine of waking, eating, doing the daily work or effort required of one, participating in your hobbies and entertainments, and just the general things that make up life on this planet.  Almost everyone lives their variation of this pattern that hopefully brings them great contentment. I used to be content and fulfilled by my normal life, waking most mornings glad to be alive and even excited to just have a cup of tea, embrace the day, and take a morning walk before going to work. Somewhere on this journey that changed; no longer having a home I wasn’t in my groove doing those simple things that brought me great pleasure and contentment. I have and enjoy even more simple pleasures while traveling, but no routine that brings me joy.  Even now, still living a life of ease, I am missing that feeling which embraced me each day. To the best of my understanding this is the result of not having or being challenged and missing my connection to something greater than myself. Without a goal to work on, such as a job or project I care about, there is no push to grow, to learn and better myself each day. Likewise I find that without my daily personal development or global development of community and the bettering of humanity, I equally am not challenged to grow. I found a bigger expression of myself in Inida that required of me to participate with all of the people involved there. Before I could go about my day alone and was content unto myself, but once this experience of community and connection was established, going back to something less just doesn’t give me enough anymore. This is why I want to return to India so much, to grow and feed myself in this area. Then it is my hope to be able to expand this experience and grow it into my own dream of living a connected life. All human beings I think hunger in some way for this connection and we are just waking up to the fact that with our new societal development we have forgotten for a time what real connection is and the joy that comes with it.
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*Meeting beloved Osho friends in their home countries, Norway
Hindsight is a wonderful teacher, which today teaches me that the simplest decisions and the reasons for making them can change your whole world. In essence I made a simple decision in India and I am living the consequences today. One month prior to leaving the Pune Meditation Resort, I agreed to join my friends for a month in Dharamshala. This created “The Plan”, which after Dharamshala would take me to Germany for two months with a good friend of mine, then two weeks travel in Northern Europe. All of the plan was decided in roughly one moment and when the actual moment to follow the plan or change it came, I just stuck with the plan. In that moment of decision, at the end of my three months in Pune, not only was everyone and every experience telling me I should stay, my own inner voice and gut feeling was that I should stay. For fear of changing the plan and following my heart, which would have cost me money on plane tickets and a prepaid meditation program, plus the gut wrenching feeling of bailing on my friends and partner last minute, I ignored how I was feeling and followed a decision I made a month prior. Had those other considerations not been present,  the decision would have been easy, but the lesson was, can I follow my inner truth when it is going to cost me something? The answer at that time was obviously no, but now looking back over what unfolded I wont make that same decision twice. Following your energy and power is so important because it leads you to the right places and experiences that you can thrive in. When I said no to that inner voice, I lost my power and over the following three months ran dry, and life eventually became a little flat. I still enjoyed the experiences that I had, but I could have really enjoyed them with my energy intact. It is so clear to me that I was afraid to do what was best for me and energetically I paid the price. So I am headed back to Pune and I am moving away from plans, and if I do end up with a plan, I will trust that I can change it in a heartbeat without fear. I have given myself the freedom and time to honor what I feel and follow that direction. Everyone can look at their life right now and see places where they avoid what they really want. I am asking everyone to start doing what you really want, even in small ways, because the alternative feels pretty flat, pretty lifeless, and once you are there, getting back to ecstatic takes some work and effort.
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*First sun seen in Iceland after two days of rain which setup my favorite day of the year
I’ve concluded there are two types of travel experiences, loosely called 1st world and 3rd world because that is where they occur. A 1st world experience is generally Europe, organized, clean, expensive, historical beauty in buildings, and whatever experience you wish for generally is going to cost you money, from entertainment to food. A 3rd world experience is generally a bit messy, cheap, naturally beautiful, and the thought of money barely crosses your mind. Both are equally wonderful experiences, but the difference between them is vast and gets right to the core of expectations for levels of comfort and the psychological effects of money. For those with a more limited budget for travel, they find their dollars stretching farther outside of the 1st world countries and from their perspective perhaps live in a level of comfort unaccustomed. This can be a huge psychological experience, because for the first time you are allowed the freedom to experience all that you wish. If you want to eat this and that, taxi here and there, buy gifts and clothes, it doesn’t cost you mental anguish to add up the costs and then balance that against how much work you have to do to pay for it.  You might for the first time experience money as an energy source, instead of a commodity, and using it like any other energy source for the betterment of your life experience. Likewise, traveling where your dollar goes for less, has you scrambling for the cheapest options, making sandwiches at home just so you can spend another day in the 1st world experience. Both are needed to understand the effect money plays on our perception of happiness in doing the things we want in life. Personally I like a mix of both experiences, but prefer on the whole the relaxed attitude of 3rd world living, with beautiful surroundings and no stress about money. There is just as much culture, and many more smiles while interacting with the locals, and when you train your eye on how locals get by each day with so few material resources, but so much happiness, you can really experience the freedom of money and learn to enjoy every day in a new way.
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*The best apple pie in Amsterdam, a new favorite city of mine
While traveling with a lot of free time, you can always find something to do, but just being present with yourself is a wonderful gift. On the many trains, planes, and waiting rooms I found that I wasn’t putting in my headphones for music right away or checking Facebook. I would just sit and be patient and enjoy my own presence; not needing something to do or a distraction just to “kill some time”, instead enjoying just being alive in that moment of waiting. The interesting thing is the correlation between how present you are and the urge for distraction. I notice most acutely when the time to meditate arises and some urge also arises to check anything on my phone for any distraction. Why this postponement? A surge of anxiety arises over being present with myself as if the ego knows its being removed from its throne. It is a battle with my mind each time, and the more present I am, the easier it is to take a few moments and reach that place of joyous centeredness. The paradox is that meditation brings the real joy, but the hurdle is to forgo the distractions and entertainments that falsely promise happiness to simply reach it. Upon reaching that presence, you can enjoy those distractions even more so, if you choose, because you come from the place of presence and not of using the distractions to cover some feeling of emotion. Vipassana taught me that when we desire something, it usually isnt the object itself, but we desire the sensation of desiring itself, and we think the object will bring it to us. So when a feeling arises we chase after the externalization of that feeling to satiate it instead of seeing the truth of just being with the feeling and seeing it for what it is. This is the hurdle to doing almost anything in life, be it meditation or going to the gym. So more than anything, I’ve learned when this feeling of not wanting to meditate exists, I am overdue to sit down, meditate and reach my calm once again to see the world clearly. There will always be a multitude of interesting and entertaining things vying for your attention, but it fundamentally comes down to how do you wish to spend your time on this earth? Once you taste the beauty of your inner world, any worldly distractions begin to pale in comparison to really living life. Just like cutting sugar out of your diet leads to everything else tasting incredibly delicious, removing these other distractions leaves you with more time and space to enjoy your own delicious presence of being.
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*Meditative dancing in India, also used for a promotional photo seen by thousands of people, which surprised me
I have had to remember this myself after leaving India. After a daily schedule of meditation, going back to doing it all on your own takes some serious discipline.  Traveling once again brought many distractions and riding that excitement I left my meditation practice a bit behind.  This led to a bit of confusion and feeling lost in my direction of life which is one of my biggest challenges.  As I find myself a bit of a fish out of water, I have to trust that I always carry the keys to my own happiness and they are but a few silent moments away from being with myself. It is a lifelong practice to be who you are and do what you love. Finding out what really excites you is the first half, then learning how to live that life each day is the rest of the task. The more truth we can experience about what really speaks to our hearts, what really lights up our faces, and makes us jump for joy, the closer we are to living a meditative lifestyle. I hope everyone has found at least one thing that has that flavor for them, because once you know the taste, there is no going back to a bland life. Blessings and joy to everyone on their journey and may all beings be happy.
 
Torey
The Wandering Monk
 
A special thank you to everyone who hosted me in their homes, couches, hearts, and lives.  Without your support and encouragement I never would have had the year I did and all of the new experiences. I love you all and it still brings tears to my eyes remembering what it feels like to be so taken care of instead of the other way around.
 
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*Being silly with my best friend Tate in Germany, “Up all night to pet puppies!”
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*Amsterdam round two with friends this time
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*Met Mo and David on my first workaway experience in France, a new beloved mentor
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*Seeing good friends and new loves in Belgium! Plus waffles and frites
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*Our beloved cheese master who treated us like family and introduced me to my new favorite cheeses, bare kase from Switzerland
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*Went under the knife of brave friends in Switzerland when my hair got unruly
1467470_981566286421_920741569_n  *Explored the beautiful canals of Venice, and checked off the first part of Eat, Pray, Love10177435_10100144038717341_8551906736441433225_n   *Visited the Taj Mahal at the end of India, and another check for Eat, Pray, Love10406955_10100170838470421_2633856899521643109_n
*Jumped into the freezing waters of Norway!
 

Divine encounters and workaway

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There is a great opportunity going on in the world and I would not like anyone to miss it. Volunteer your time around the world doing various work experiences and earn a free place to stay and food to eat. Sound like a good trade? It did to me, and I have gained more than I expected. In my three years of travel around the world I plan to utilize this method to extend my time and experiences in the world while costing me only travel expenses.  Experiences fall mostly into the gardening work, nannying, or handy man type, but can vary into marine biology scuba diving  and chocolate making. For five hours a day you get a wonderful experience and can really take time to explore the local culture.  You also get the added benefit of living with a family and can practice another language.         France house
Getting started on my first experience was difficult in the sense that I couldn’t decide where I wanted to apply to. There were so many opportunities in France alone, I could hardly decide on one to add to my travels, so I didn’t. However, once I had traveled for two months, I was ready for some quiet life and being in touch with nature.  I looked up some hosts again and one immediately popped out. Close to Lourdes France where I wanted to visit, was a couple who had retired from running a spiritual retreat and needed a bit of help in the garden. Not more than 10 minutes after sending an email, I had a reply and a destination, where once was only the open road. The universe had stepped in and answered my request in full.
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I spent 20 hours on various trains over two days traveling from eastern Italy to western France. On the mid point in Nice, my roommate for the night was Chris, the first traveler I’ve met on a two year journey traveling this volunteer lifestyle. He had just finished work on a vineyard harvesting grapes and learning about making wine. Admittedly hard work, but he had loved it. A teacher and chef, on break from working life, sitting in my room to encourage me on the eve of my first experience. The universal positioning of this meeting is incalculable, and thus is a perfect sign that I am exactly where I need to be at this moment. We hit it off and swapped stories about how great traveling like this is and our perfect encounter. I pull myself away to visit the ocean, watch the stars and love how perfect life is right at this moment. I am reminded that I asked for all this and I am grateful to recognize its arrival. Watching it unfold, having let the universe drop all the physical pieces into place, even I couldn’t have written such a perfect script.
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The moment I meet David at the train station and step foot into their lives, I know this meeting was scheduled. It looks like I am here to help with the garden, but I am really here to meet David and his wife Mo. When a complete stranger steps into your life there is usually a small or rather large adjustment period. No such thing was present, I seamlessly stepped into daily life as if a son coming home for holiday.  A wonderful life of gratitude, blessings, mutual understanding, spiritual work, and work in the garden awaited me. It seemed to be that a gathering, lunch, party, or other event was always happening and that I had come at the perfect time to enjoy the last of an Indian summer and meet this wonderful group of people. For what I consider a small French town, I was amazed at the diversity of interesting people and English speakers living here.
 France garden
We started our days with family breakfast and a blessing over our meal. Then proceeded to read a chapter from “A Course in Miracles”, followed by a group hug, which officially began our day. Garden work and large lunches were the theme. Mo is a potter and I got to see the kiln be fired twice. She started her spiritual journey in India by jumping in the deep end. Joining an ashram and shaving her head, she experienced her transformation moment to moment and it gives me great excitement to hear her stories. David does wonderful work with wood and examples of both their works adorn the property.  Before retiring from their spiritual retreat they taught sacred geometry and the flower of life courses. David and I broach a wide variety of spiritual topics and conversations about the spiritual journey which keep us up most nights with eager enthusiasm.
David’s spiritual path looks so similar to mine it almost stuns me in the simplicity of story line. Young man becomes disillusioned with life prescribed by society, seeks spiritual path, is called to start a center and teach from the heart, lives this way and finds great peace and joy. David is the first male role model in my life to have done anything similar to what I am trying to attempt. From the general vibe of daily life and being 40 years my senior I am in for a wonderful ride. The fluidity of changing minds is so much easier today than it was 40 years ago. I can only guess at what leaps of consciousness and love can be achieved during my lifetime. It is such a pleasurable thought to have been called to this path, and while I don’t know the particulars of how my story will unfold, I trust in the same source that brought me this far, and to this experience, to provide the rest of the amazing story line.
 Vesica Pisces from Space
*A 55 foot Vesica Pisces cut into their grass as seen from satellite, sacred geometry
David’s passion is the theme of sacred geometry, in that all of life is connected. After having been exposed to the material it is quite amazing how all of life comes out of this simple and powerful principal. From plants and flowers to fertilized eggs, all of life works with these principals and follows the patterns of sacred geometry. There is also a meditation associated with this knowledge that sets up an energy field around you so that you may interact and experience your connection to the oneness of life. It may just be that I arrived here under such perfect conditions just to learn this one thing, but I would say that I learned and experienced so much more.
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The loving compassion in which David and Mo welcomed me into their lives and shared all that they have goes beyond words. The pure feeling of waking up each day, knowing that I was taken care of like a young child with loving parents is indescribable. I have been working hard to allow myself to be taken care of, whether by friends, strangers, or the universe itself. I have always been happy to take care of others and in the end I turned it into a shield against experiencing the same in return. To return to the knowing and feeling of being totally safe and with loved ones is a remembering of our true nature. We are always taken care of and this flow comes to us unrelenting and in abundance if we but learn to allow it. The shape and circumstances may always be different, but with the loving intention to flow with life, is to experience the love of life. I will be forever thankful for this gift and seek to be an example of it so that others may know this feeling.
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The coincidences during my stay are beyond number, but one must be mentioned. I got to visit a real chateau and was amazed in the beauty and charm this building, older than the United States itself, held in its walls. During lunch in the village though, everyone greets fellow customers, and I made the acquaintance of Robin, a local healer and I am sure a very interesting person. In our short 3 minute introduction he gave me a litany of recommendations for India and offered to put me up in a house of his in northern India inhabited by Tibetans. I just have to laugh at how easily opportunities show up where available to help you along. It had been my strong and hourly intention to bring amazing experiences, people, music, resources, and food into my life. Of course it’s going to show up and sometimes what looks like a dramatic and wild offering seems simply perfect from one seeker to another. Releasing the resistance to universal source showing up in your life allows strangers to offer you what you desire. Only a short time ago this scenario might have been met with hesitation from myself, but I am in gratitude that I am evolving into a receiver of the intentions I make no matter what form they arrive in.
 mo and dacid
10 days have disappeared in a blink and yet each moment was lived fully and with great joy. I have a day at Lourdes for prayer and meditation, followed by my second Vipassana course and then off to India. As David confirmed, I am not going to India to learn anything, just to experience a way of living so that I may better manifest into my life that which brings the greatest joy. You reach a point where you don’t need to learn anything anymore. At first you pass a stage of gathering as much information as possible. Everything is novel and excites that deep place of knowing within you that recognizes truth. Another stage arrives where one goes quiet and must practice and experience this knowing. When something is needed you will know it when it is needed or be led to the knowing. One need not strive anymore to gather knowledge around oneself, but understands that all things  show up at exactly the right moment. I am entering this stage and I must say from the few experiences of this principal, it is true and beyond amazing. The stuff magic and dreams are made of, but accessible at every moment. We truly live in a miraculous reality
 france barn
I finish my experience in southern France with my trip to Lourdes. This was the source that set the previous experiences into motion and it doesn’t fail to delight either. Upon reaching the church grounds I can already feel my vibration raising to the level of healing. Old patterns forcing their way to the surface to flee this pureness. I arrive at mass and participate, even taking the body of Christ as I learned as a child. A symbolic act of aligning with the vibration of experience. I meditate and pray for around two hours as peoples faces and words of blessing form easily in my mind. I am alone in this great cathedral and the silence is amazing. I explore my interior space as well in light of my new merkaba energy field that is energizing me and my intentions.
  spring
On my break I stroll the grounds and find that the grey rain clouds have turned to sunny blues. How many times will I write about such experiences before they begin to bore my readers I wonder? I find the famous grotto with the healing spring. I pay my respects with the few others here on this perfect fall day. I then wash my face, jewelry, and fill my bottles with this holy water. It tastes fresh and crisp when I bring it to my lips and radiates a pleasant vibration from my stomach. I continue my leisurely stroll sipping holy water and relaxing into the peace of mind and body I have come to know as my daily experience. As my vibration continues to rise to match this water, I am healed. Healing being a state of being that expresses itself without resistance. I watch as little unconscious thoughts or habits come to the surface and are washed away without a second thought. Just being here is enough, the experience of a higher vibration is the healing, and above all else I choose to see things differently. Bless you all and may you find your way to perfect peace and harmony.
 france buddha
Resources for traveling:
Workaway
Also
Woofing: only for organic farming