September 12, 2013
After almost three months since my last visit to the Oregon coast, I have finally returned for a long weekend of camping alone. Less than two weeks ago, I attempted to make a more permanent move to Eugene in the context of an unstable work/living situation, which was quickly falling apart. Unsure of what was going to happen and what my next move would be, revisiting the place I felt most independent and inspired seemed like an appropriate place to reevaluate.
Since my return yesterday, I have been overcome with joy, happiness, awe, and excitement, and even wrote an Ode to the Oregon Coast during last night's sunset. The stunning surroundings have lifted my mood immensely and the natural silence of the environment spiked my creativity as I turned my attention inward. And just like my first visit to the Oregon coast in June, I felt like being here was what my soul needed.
Before departing Seattle to return to the coast, I made some connections that lead to introductions to very interesting, like-minded people, whose company would eventually lead to inspiring conversations and new adventures. The best part of these connections was the simple reminder that interacting with like-minded and passionate people has a somewhat contagious effect... I felt reinvigorated about my plans and goals and could feel my energy resurfacing in spite of the challenges I'd recently been facing.
**Side Note: It felt a little funny for me to post my "Low Tide" blog yesterday considering how contrasting those lows had felt to the highs I was presently experiencing. For the most part, I have been trying to post my blogs in chronological order, but I’ve decided that I’m going to throw that notion out the window. I’ve realized that sometimes I am ready to write and share, and others it takes me a little longer to verbalize, catch up, or whatever the writer's block may be; life isn't really linear anyways, but hopefully this isn't too confusing! I'm still considering dating each blog with the actual dates it is documenting, to help make sense of what may appear to be wildly erratic locations and stories, but that is yet to be decided (I'm open to input). In the meantime, here’s a post about yesterday, June 27th…**
From beginning to end, today was one of those perfect kind of travel days. It started out beautifully, and by the time it was finished, I felt truly blessed, connected, and in love with life. As I drove home after watching the most resplendent sunset, listening to Sloom by Of Monsters and Men (which was lyrically, synchronistically ideal for the day I'd had), I felt as though my fourth chakra (aka heart chakra) was actually exploding with love, and it seemed to be at everything and nothing...
It’s hard to believe it’s been two weeks since I left my first spot on the road trip – Pleasant Valley Sanctuary. It’s been a whirlwind of a trip so far, keeping me busy with plenty of things to do besides write, but really I think I’ve been putting off writing about this particular experience because I feel there may not be words to appropriately capture everything it was. Time seems to be flying by though, so it seems like I should at least try…
I arrived at the sanctuary the afternoon after they had finished a three-day silent retreat, so the resounding energy was a stark contrast from the world I felt like I was leaving behind. Though it seemed nearly deserted, I was greeted by one of the two owners, who gave me a brief tour and guided me to my tent. After, I was greeted by another gentleman who was there on a work exchange, and who gave me a full tour of the property before taking me down to a spot on the Yuba river. Swimming in the cool, clean, refreshing waters revived me, and when we got back to the sanctuary, I was eventually acquainted with the rest of the people there and the daily schedule. The entire sanctuary functioned on this schedule, and though I wasn’t a part of all of the activities, the schedule shaped my time there. It was a simple but transformative schedule that looked essentially like this:
The art of doing nothing is one that I’m not quite so acquainted with, but have definitely been trying to embrace. A natural-born planner and busy-body, I generally always have a lot going on, in my life and in my mind, so slowing down isn’t always something that comes easily to me. Having spent the last year in the clairvoyant program, working out regularly and often, and in a job that always kept me busy, this transition to a slower pace has been a bit of a change; and moving out and preparing for this summer has given me plenty to keep myself busy with over the last few weeks. So, although I’ve never before experienced one of those do-nothing vacations I’ve heard of people talking about, I decided that 10 days in Hawaii would be the perfect time and place to change gears. I aimed to not make any plans, and limited my goals to my website, meditating regularly, and a personal favorite, watching the sunrise and set the same day.
I think that’s where I am! Waking up on Maui this morning, I wasn’t feeling too good, so I decided, actually more like forced, myself to meditate. Anyone who has attempted and/or succeeded in having a regular meditation practice could probably attest to the fact that it is not always easy. Just like training for anything, whether it’s a sport, a class, a job, etc, it’s not always easy, and you don’t always want to do the work, but it’s the knowledge that if you push through the rough times, the brighter times will be on the horizon, and that’s the motivation to keep going.
I think it’s safe to say, the summer’s adventures have begun! After months of considering, planning (unplanning), and attempted preparing, I am now, officially, just traveling.
On the beach at Napili Bay, one of my old favorite spots, I realize that I’ve underestimated the depth and vividness of my memories. Ever since flying into Maui, I’ve been experiencing flooding memories of my previous time spent here, and in general of what was going on in my life then. Almost exactly seven years ago, about 6 months after Chris had passed away, I was lucky enough to spend some time floating between Maui and Oahu. My crash pad in Maui was just up the street from Napili Bay, so upon arriving today, I decided to take a walk through the entire area.
Stories from the road-trip that inspired moving to the PNW, and other travel adventures.