Mountains don’t get as much glory as the sea

Mountains don’t get as much glory as the sea.
Yet, you are sturdy and resolved
Not wavering and uncertain like the waters.
Your presence is always felt; your shadows calm me in its imposition.
Not like the sea, demanding respect and instilling fear.

Sometimes I’m frightened by how high I have to climb,
It is more comfortable floating on the surface,
But once on top of you, I am only reminded of how far I’ve come.
Things are lighter up there.
The sea can only push me down into its dark pressures,
Crushing my lungs.

I will never drown in your being;
I may fall, but even then I’ll be at your feet.
Your tantrums are infrequent,
Unlike the constant ebbs and flows of the sea,
Even in the quiet of the night.

You may not cradle me like the waters;
You may not be malleable enough to slip through fingers;
You may not wash over me;
But you are always there when I need you.

Mountains don’t get as much glory as the sea.

Eat, Dance, Discover

I’ve been going through a quarter life crisis since I graduated from college in 2011. This is not because I feel inadequate; but rather I feel I have numerous skills, talents and passions which I am struggling to piece together. I was fed the dream that I can have it all, and I would be damned if I don’t.

On Christmas Eve, 2011, as I sat for a quiet dinner with a good friend who possess a lot of wisdom, we talked about future goals and ate some good pizza – the perfect recipe for all great life prophecy declarations – I professed

By 30, I want to be GREAT

In my journey to self fulfillment I had a plan, which I have semi been on track for. I wanted to live and work in The USA, Southern Africa, and Brazil for a year, in each, to better define what it is I seek. I’ve checked living and working off in two of the countries, and as I type this I sit in a room in Brazil as I am 17 days away from completing my 3 months of being here. Not to shabby Baby Phoofs

I chose these three countries because they are familiar and have defined who I am in various ways. I thought to live in each to draw from my past experiences to see what it is I want to be surrounded by and how much of it is dependent on the physical place.

These past three years have been my semi own version of Eat, Pray, Love without the intention of it being

ImageEat, Pray, Love
Elizabeth Gilbert
2006

I sought to buy this book while on vacation here in Brazil. Since I was on no ones time but my own I wanted to gain some insight from a person in a somewhat similar position. I was made aware of this story because of the movie; however I have not watched the film. So I decided to read it.

I was salivating at Elizabeth’s endless supply of good food, except for the octopus she ate in Tuscany. Through reading her Italian travels, I really wished I was a foodie, and I honestly think in reading I have become so a little bit – or rather I have a deeper appreciation for a well prepared meal.

However, I really connected to her time in India the most. To make it clear, I am NOT a yoga enthuse, and the idea of spending a week, let alone 3 months, in an Ashram sounds like torture to me. I did relate to her finding balance through spirituality, and I really enjoyed her exchanges with Richard from Texas.

Elizabeth’s time in Bali gave me another place to put on my potential honeymoon destinations list, and piqued my interest in natural remedies – my drinking of Chlorophyll may have to do with this too, although I am sad that I have yet to turn into a Quarter Life Crisis Mutant Ninja Turtle.

Admittedly, I was enthralled by Elizabeth’s memoirs more than I had anticipated. I thought it was going to be a cheese romantic story, as the movie led me to believe – or more accurately, my thoughts on the movie pre watching it. As I work towards finding my own balance, the book posed some questions that forced me to sit and reflect and write it out.

I also thought, If I had the resources and ability, what would my Eat, Pray, Love be? As much as these past three years have been somewhat similar, I came up with a new itinerary called:

Eat, Dance, Discover

EAT
Where: Colombia

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Why: I have heard great things about the country from people who have traveled there. I feel my life travels will be incomplete without a trip to Cartagena and Medillin. Colombia’s political situation fascinates me, and I will spend my time learning and reading about its political history to present day. I also love the Spanish language, and I find the Colombian accent to be one of the prettiest, so why not. For the Eat part of my journey: I love Colombian food, so what better reason to learn how to cook than to go to Colombia to eat and cook some of my favorite dishes?

Dance
Where: Cuba

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Why: I LOVE TO DANCE, zero questions asked “to dance” is my favorite verb to do. It involves two of my favorite things, music and movement; how can you not love to dance? I have this over romanticization of Cuba, and picture the Island, specifically Old Havana, as a place of 50s Fords, Men dressed in all white, and women rolling cigars; all of this with son, salsa, reaggeton, and Cuban Hip Hop as the soundtrack. I will go back-ally to back-ally and dance in the most overcrowded halls and dance to it all, and this will be pure happiness.

Discover
Where: Senegal

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Why: Since 2005, I have seen Dakar, Senegal when my 18 hour plane rides stopped in this city to refuel as a mid way point between Johannesburg and New York City. After approximately 9hrs of flight,you are awoken by cabin crew, and I normally lift my blind and see this beautiful landscape of Dakar. Honestly, landing in Dakar as the sun is about to rise is absolutely gorgeous, and for that reason I want to discover what this place has to offer. I am sure I would be in for a food treat too as I discover new spices and flavors that are not part of my daily intake. Also Senegal is rich in history, and I would love to learn more about the place, and why not pick up on another language while I’m at it?

Endless Summer

Let me let you in on a little secret
I am in love with love
A hopeless romantic and romantically hopeless
I have a lot of heart-shaped messages
placed with a kiss in a bottle of eternity
left to float in the sea of you
Me, you, who?
Sorry, the bottles remain in hand
’cause people hurt
and I fear
and my bruises are slow to heal
But in the lost of it all
I wish you an endless summer

This is what happens when I spend 10hrs in a plane, conceived watching (500) Days of Summer, birthed waiting for my plane to taxi to its gate

Brazil – Why dont you love me like I do you?

I am convinced the universe does NOT want me to be happy, i.e. go to Brazil. Tomorrow is about to be my third time flying to Brazil, and each time I encounter problems *cue ATCQ 8 Million Stories* What rubbish am I talking about…

Well below is a blog post from the second time I was going to Brazil in 2010 (dated January 21st)

“Background Information:
In 2004 I went to Brazil with my sister; I was flying from South Africa, whilst my sister came from the USA.  The trip wasn’t as problematic as it was exhaustive, but it still was not 100s enjoyable! So the trip – My dad dropped my mom and I off in Lady brand (don’t worry if you have NO idea where that is)  at 8ish PM to catch a bus coming from Durban going to Bloemfontein. The bus was late, it was June = Cold, so from the onset it was not a fun trip. We got to Bloem and had a bus layover, which was pretty fun, or as fun as watching the Euro cup without any sound at the Bloem bus station can be .  The Bus left Bloem in the wee hours of the morning and my mom and I arrived in Johannesburg (feels so weird spelling out the full name) with 4 hours till my flight. I then had to take a taxi, NO not a taxi cab but a 16 seater bus to the airport; and for anyone who has ever been in a South African/Lesotho taxi, you know that is an experience on it’s own. Once I FINALLY arrived at the airport, a porter poser stole my night bag/carry on piece, which resulted in me crying for a good 30 min. In the end, I fortunately boarded the plane, and arrived in Rio de Janeiro, happy to be in the country of my dreams!

What is the correlation between that story and now you ask? Well, the Brazilian consulate in Boston had my passport for a good three weeks and never answered their phone when I called or replied to emails. After a changed flight ticket and borderline depression, my sister urged, to which I agreed, me to go to Boston and ask about my passport + visa. Thus I left my sisters house at 5ish AM, to board a 7 am China town bus to go to Boston the day of my flight. Once in Boston went STRAIGHT to the consulate, and within 20 minutes I was promised a visa. Awe, Jeito Brasiliero! I got my passport + visa at 1:30, and dashed franticly  to the Boston station to take the 2 pm China town bus back to New York. I felt like vodka with Redbull, conflicted emotions, pissed yet hella ecstatic. But I had one more hurdle to jump over, getting to the airport on time! My flight was at 10pm, meaning I had to be there at 8. However, I only got into the city at 6:30pm, and I still had to get to my sister’s apartment to get my bags, and it takes an hour to get there, *sigh*. And it doesn’t help that I got lost in China town trying to find the subway….But with a powerful intervention from the above, and my sister’s HUGE contributions ($$$) I made it to the airport sin problema ”

NOW (2013)

well, a week before leaving  for Johannesburg I went through misfortunes, hoops, and about to jump over another hurdle (fingers crossed)
So it was my quarter life birthday to Sundays ago YAY, and as I was overly excited, and aided by fermented juices, I started to countdown my birthday. With 2 minutes to go, I placed my cellphone back into my bag and celebrated with a few friends. At stroke of midnight, I received a shout out from the DJ, got a hug from a friend, and as I turned back to my bag (which was laid at the side of my friend on a couch) it was gone! Cellphone, Wallet – with bank cards, social security card about $50 cash, house keys, and other miscellaneous items…GONE!
I chose to party on, my bag was gone and there was no use crying over it…an enjoyable birthday I had….
Also living as a semi illegal citizen, I had to pull Houdini stunts at the border (wont go into details…I want to be President one day)
Now, I am sitting at a Pizza place in Johannesburg, drinking a latte and decided to quadruple make sure that I do not need a visa to travel to Brazil (I have no real plan if I find out that I do) Well as luck would have it, I don’t BUUUUUUTTTTT, I have to show proof that I have had my yellow fever shot..FUCK MY LIFE!!!

Not only have I been to Brazil twice already, I have had my yellow fever shot and my certificate! BUT, I didn’t read this detail before leaving Lesotho, so now I have to pull missions to an International Clinic to have my yellow fever shot AGAIN! Im pretty calm for a person leaving tomorrow who has NO idea how I am going to get my shot!

I’m already in Salvador mind set, and believe that Tudo vai certo

It’s also Tunesday sooooo

This is a song and video about the city I am going to call home for the next three months, Salvador, Bahia – The land of eternal happiness