Udaipur charmed me. I was wooed. The breathtaking rooftop views of endless mountains in the distance; the sense of vibrancy surrounding the picturesque lakes; the constant buzz of activity; the chilled out meandering cows; the enchanting architecture; the striking colors of fruits, vegetables and women donned in exquisite saris; the maze of winding streets and even the outrageous traffic scenarios – I was enthralled by it all. Udaipur re-welcomed me to India and to this travel journey, in a whole new way. I was beginning to feel quite at home here.
I was being picked up at 10am for my next jaunt. Eager as I was for what lay ahead, I was sad to be moving on so quickly. I hadn’t even visited City Palace or biked around the lakes. Greeted by the driver who would take me to Krishna Ranch (http://www.krishnaranch.com) where I would be staying for one evening, I hopped in his car (though sort of wish I arranged to bike instead) and enjoyed his detailed descriptions and unexpected tour-guiding as we exited the bustling city life of Udaipur and made our way through the serene countryside. Those glorious mountains I gazed at from the rooftops were now right in front me, lush and green. The quiet streets were filled with women in striking colors, each carrying a silver tray as she walked away from yet another religious celebration of sorts.
As we drove through the quiet hills, I saw a couple of high end resorts and a newly constructed, pretty remarkable fort being built by a wealthy family who is apparently in the marble/stone industry. The street became narrower and was lined on both sides with flowerful bushes, each blossom and fluttering butterfly welcoming me to this alternate side of Udaipur.
Having entered the grounds of the Krishna Ranch, I exited the car and was welcomed by a beautiful stable full of horses. Francine (originally from Holland) came to meet me and while I became intoxicated by the nature sounds and beautiful grounds, she showed me my cottage, a very clean, tastefully decorated room with a queen size bed, seating area with chairs and table, a daybed alcove sitting section surrounded by windows and an outdoor seating area for taking in the unending splendor. The spacious modern bathroom looked pretty good too (still beyond grateful for my digestive health!)
Over a delicious cup of aromatic tea, we sat at the long wooden table in the main open-air structure and officially checked me in to this picture-perfect farm setting where I would be the only guest during this slow travel season (they’re pretty much booked during other times. I can’t imagine it being more beautiful – although I guess when the trees are filled with mangoes and other luscious fruits, it probably isn’t too bad here!) I met Dinesh, her horse-loving Indian husband and we all shared stories of travel, farming/gardening and more. I enjoyed a peaceful rest before being served a delicious home-cooked meal using almost all Krishna or otherwise locally-grown, organic ingredients.
An inordinate amount of food was served and I did my best to make a dent in it, dining to a chorus of chirping birds and a rich green scene in every direction. I was thrilled to see a beautiful shelf unit full of real, paper books. I don’t care how much books weigh, I can’t imagine using an e-reader in this serene atmosphere. I meandered the grounds for a bit, saying hello to the camel, horses, goats and chickens and then rested and read a bit more.
At 3:30, I met up with Dinesh, donned my helmet and climbed upon a beautiful horse to begin an excursion around the countryside. I haven’t had too many horse back riding experiences so it took us a bit of time to become comfy with one another, though once we did, the sound of clicking horse steps became truly meditative. We rode on dirt paths, passing through farmland and small villages, children of all ages greeting me with big hellos and goodbyes. Dinesh was a wonderful guide and pointed interesting things out along the way, from types of trees to methods of farming to the antelopes and peacocks roaming the fields. We returned to the ranch and we all, including the horses, got ready to relax and have some dinner. A special pile of sand was set up for the horses to each have a quick roll in before settling in for the eve.
I chilled out at my villa, taking in the array of nature sounds and the diminishing light. Animals I couldn’t begin to identify howled and cooed in the distance. I learned later that I was probably hearing monkeys. The night sky now dark, I couldn’t bear to turn on my lights and was beyond ecstatic for this tranquility. I returned to the beautiful wooden table where I was served yet another gorgeous home-cooked meal prepared by Narani. I was delighted to have her join me while I ate and loved hearing her stories about her life as a woman in Udaipur. My thali-style meal included mutar panner, dahl, chapatti (with flour made right here), halwa (absolutely amazing) and her home-made pickled sauces. They also offer me a steady flow of filtered water.
Thrilled to not have wifi, I retreated to my villa for some reading, writing and full mind/body restoration. I had to pinch myself a couple of times to ensure this was all for real and continued counting my blessings for somehow landing in this magical world of wonder. Inviting as my villa’s bed was, I longed for a tent to savor in the fresh night breeze and twinkling stars above. I figured it out – I opened all of the windows and set up my mosquito net in the day bed area, barely separated from the steady sounds of nature and the mountain views I would wake to see as a new day dawned.
And so it did. A breakfast spread to dream of – fresh made yogurt, brilliant red pomegranate, pieces of papaya, toast with more of that delicious butter, eggs, chai, bananas, apples and of course some filtered water. I spent a bit more time with Francine & Dinesh and asked them about the intense sounds I heard last night, loud rustling and two bursts of mysterious animal screams. Did a chicken just get killed? Did it wake from a bad nightmare? They suggested it was likely a peacock killed by some type of wildcat or possibly a leopard. The farm property abuts the wildlife preserve and many have been spotted. Startling as it was, it sure beats the sound of cop cars in NYC.
Just a few minutes before my ride would pick me up. Intrigued and animated for what I knew would be another wondrous chapter, I couldn’t help but but mourn the end of my time at the beautiful Krishna Ranch. I took many deep breaths and inhaled the healing tranquility I vowed to carry with me. I am also sending sweet little doses of it to you all.
Thank you universe.
Thank you India Someday.
Thank you You Wander We Pay.
Check out a similar post which originally appeared on the India Someday site.
Check out my original post on Janmashtani Celebrations and Indian Hospitality on the India Someday site.
It seems like everyday is some type of holiday or festival here in India. From Jain holidays to Krishna celebrations, festivities abound. Many Jain folks are fasting for 8 days now. In areas of Mumbai, there is a ban on the sale of meat during this holiday time.
Just when I thought I had a full Janmashtami experience at the community celebration in Ahmbedabad, I immediately got a sense that the Jagdish Temple festivities in Udaipur would be quite a wonder – and I sure was right. Colorfully-dressed men, women and children, amplified music, the clay pot dangling up above the public square, shiny streamers and lights – and a buzz of festival-like energy was constant.
I was told that after 6pm the festivities would really get started, and that they would end by around 8:15 or whenever the pyramid of boys grew tall enough to knock the clay pot of yogurt down.
I made my way over at around 7/730 and joined the dense crowd of spectators. I wish I could have somehow made it to one of the many balconies overflowing with onlookers but found myself a spot where the visibility wasn’t bad and there actually some room for breathing. But that changed pretty quickly! I rarely go deep into tightly crowded spaces unless I feel I have a very clear path to exit and am armed with lots of water but this seemed like a pretty special opportunity and I decided to stick it out. I was able to hold my camera up high and snap some good shots – and purposely placed myself near women to avoid any of the unwanted gropes I’ve been warned about.
Spectators roared with enthusiasm, the catchy music played loudly and there was lots of call and response, similar to the community celebration in the Ahmbedabad slum.
The crowd got tighter and tighter and the boys made pyramids that grew taller and taller, yet still nowhere near the clay pot. It was exhilarating to join in the excitement yet anxiety provoking to be in the increasingly crowded audience, not to mention the sweat literally dripping from my body. I would think it was as cramped as humanly possible – and then dozens of more people would push their way towards me from both sides. I loved the experience though was horrified at the same time, remembering terrible news stories involving intense crowds of this sort. I finally retreated, recognizing how much longer it would take. Plus, I had exciting dinner plans with a friend of my NY friend Aditi. So grateful for the connections she’s made for me. I finally pushed and squeezed my way out of the crowds (not an easy feat) and enjoyed another vantage point from the distance.
I worked my way through the maze of crooked streets and headed to the Jaiwana Haveli to meet Aditi’s friend Yash. His family has been living there for generations and now runs the beautiful hotel with stunning views overlooking the lake and palace. We met up on the roof and enjoyed a refreshing Kingfisher, some decent convo and yet another scrumptious meal, the highlight of which was the chili paneer.
I walked myself back to Madri Haveli through the windy maze, excited for a much- needed shower and rinsing of my sweat-filled clothes. I learned later that it took the boys 40 tries to make a pyramid tall enough to reach the clay pot – so glad I left when I did!
Super thankful for the A/C in my room, I slumbered well and woke to yet another delicious breakfast, this time enjoyed with Rajesh and Shankar Singh Charan, manager of the Madri Haveli. I went to check out Rasjesh’s impressive gallery and was picked up there for my next adventure – the Krishna Ranch.
Loving India. Loving life.
Thank you India Someday.
Thank you You Wander We Pay.
Check out the original post on the India Someday Blog....
Thank you India Someday for putting me up like royalty in the first couple of cities on my journey. The air-airconditioned bus (with plush reclinable chairs) from Ahmbedabad to Udaipur dropped me on the outskirts of town and I proudly negotiated a 50 Rupee rickshaw ride to the Old City. My room (or shall I say rooms) at the Madri Haveli, in the master suite, made me feel like a queen. With multiple sitting areas to choose from, nooks and crannies with beautifully shaped windows looking out onto charming old city, a separate regal bedroom, and an eye-catching stone bathroom, larger than my NYC bedroom, replete with a giant tub, two sinks and a great supply of adorable Colgate toothpastes and other toiletries.
I made my way to the rooftop and was awe-struck by the stunning views of the lush mountains, beautiful lakes and enchanting city. I knew I’d be more than content if I never left the grounds and treated myself to some laptop time in what became one of the world’s prettiest offices.
I meandered the busy colorful crooked streets and worked my way towards the quintessential boat ride around Pichola Lake. I entered at Lal Ghat (where all tourists were Indian) and took the 250 Rupee ride around the beautiful waters, staring out onto City Palace and Jagmandir and Jagniwas Islands, quickly gaining a sense of the regal life of India. Drawn to the green park space nearby, I wandered the windy paths, checked out some sculptures and spotted my first monkey hanging out.
Working my way back to the haveli, I stopped to visit the Jagdish Temple (LINK), all dressed up with lights, streamers and statues, and packed with folks celebrating the Janmashtami, Krishna’s birthday. I slipped off my shoes and joined the packed line of exquisitely dressed women in colorful saris to enter the temple, built in 1651. A clay pot dangling high above the open public square, I grew excited for the community celebration that would happen the following eve. For now, there were teems of people, lots of music, and in the evening, a midnight procession marking the birth of Krishna.
I was thrilled to meet Udaipur artist, Rajesh Soni. In addition to photography, he does beautiful work hand-coloring, in fine detail, others’ digital pictures, many of which were on display in the Madri Haveli Gallery. We drove in his car to the new part of Udaipur, passing the famous Fateh Sagar Lake (or FS as they call it here), where droves of locals go to hang out in the evening, sitting on the waters’ edge and eating at the plentiful food stands across the road. He brought me to a typical Indian thali place where unlimited vegetarian dishes are served by eager waiters. I’m so loving the yogurts and delicious aromatic flavors of each meal more than the next in this country! Our drive back was insane, his small car in competition with the motorbikes, bicycles, rickshaws, people, cows, goats and who knows what else. The streets are windy, super narrow and barely have room for one car to go by. He had an impeccable sense of the car-size and magically finessed his way thru the tightest of squeezes, at impressively high speeds.
I retreated to my royal room and woke to a rooftop breakfast for a king. Fresh fruit, black tea, cheese omelette, banana crepes and four pieces of toast with an assortment of jams and that delicious Indian butter. I enjoyed learning that the Amul brand of butter I’ve been loving, started out as a women’s cooperative. Some women started a milk society, collecting milk from everyone’s house, which eventually developed into a large established company.
I spent the day having my first Ayurvedic massage, meandering the Udaipur streets and laptopping atop my glorious shaded rooftop. Struggling to find the place listed in Lonely Planet and overwhelmed by the plentitude of choices, I decided to go with a place in the La Ghat area where I was sold on having a woman provide my massage. Loving a good massage and having experienced some of the best throughout my travels but never an Indian Ayurvedic treatment, I was curious. Throughout my hour of being gently massaged, I was curious if this woman’s work was indeed a good sampling of Ayurvedic massage because if so, I was going to exchange my rupees for bahts and head to Thailand! Thankfully, the guy who ran this questionable operation, wanted a genuine debrief and had offered earlier to return my money if I wasn’t satisfied. Dissatisfied though I was, I didn’t intend to ask for a refund. We spoke at length about Ayurvedic massage and I much more enjoyed the next half hour of treatment he gave me. Moral of the story is make sure you go to a reputable place, especially if having a woman is important for you. It became clear to me that this woman had no idea what she was doing.
Overall, a restful day in charming, well-touristed Udaipur, the City of Lakes. I loved hearing the sounds of the Krishna celebrations and staring out at those beautiful hills.
Thank you India Someday.
Thank you You Wander We Pay.
I woke early to go on the highly recommended Heritage Walk through the old city of Ahmedabad. My guide was extremely knowledgeable and spoke an easy-to-understand English, making the history and architecture of this traditional old city truly come alive. A well-spent 100 Rupees! It leaves from the Swaminarayan Temple. It’s quite easy to simply enjoy the beauty and intricacy of designs and styles of living, but all the better to actually learn the history, understand the symbols, architecture, art, religious places and traditions of this beautiful walled city. Thank you India Someday for this suggestion.
From the intricate door designs to the bird feeders (some now towered over by taller structures,) to the story of “salty water pol,” the tour was the perfect length of time to offer a solid orientation to the urban planning, religion, architecture and even trees of India. We were walked through various “pols,” neighborhoods of carved wooden houses, wells, bird-feeding towers and courtyards. Pols were originally designed as a security measure, with secret entrances and confusing street mazes. The houses each have two entrances for quick escapes. There are approximately 360 pols in the old city. The walk ended at Jama Masjid, the city’s oldest mosque. Constructed in 1423, it’s enormous peaceful courtyard and 260-columned prayer hall seem like an ideal sanctuary for the significant Muslim community of Ahmbedabad. It was fascinating to see some the religious fusion at these sites as well.
Janmaashtami – Krishna’s Birthday Community Celebration
I made my way back to the Gandhi Ashram to meet the Manav Sadhna folks at 11am to depart for the community celebration in a nearby slum neighborhood. We piled into a small van and I began to feel much more like myself, out of the tourist world, and into real life. Manav Sadhna seems to be doing great community work, striving to develop “ladders, not leaders.”
We climbed down a small hill from the road and entered a vibrant community oasis, teeming with smiling children excited for the day’s celebration of Krishna’s birthday. Tim and I met up with Gala, a fabulous short-term volunteer from Barcelona and I was immediately accosted by dozens of kids at a time, incessantly shaking my hand, asking my name and staring deep into my eyes. We helped out with preparations for what turned out to be a long, performance filled celebration. We were taken on a walk through the narrow alleyways of the community, past people’s small home spaces and to the 2-tiny-roomed school Manav Sadhna operates there. We enjoyed a lunch of crunchy snacks with some of the center’s staff, sitting on the floor of the school.
When performance time finally approached, we joined the children in the tent, squeezed in like sardines, all excited for the story of Krishna to come alive and so it did. From traditional to modern dance to call and response activities and acted out scenes, the whole experience was quite fascinating, and it didn’t happen quickly! Packed to the rim with children and adults, the burning India sun beat down on the tent, flies abounded and kids became unsurprisingly antsy, mischievously flicking rocks and bickering with each other. I sat, without an inch to move, in between it all. The performances were awesome. (Ugh - I sadly just realized I can't put videos up here. Perhaps I'll get them up on You Tube of Facebook and will share links.)
Shabbat at the Synagogue
I was excited to learn that Ahmbedabad is home to a significant Jewish community, with a synagogue quite close to my beautiful haveli. A perfect Friday night activity! I invited Gala and Tim to join me in checking out their 7pm Kabbalat Shabbat services. Quite excited about it, they had a blast enjoying their first ever Jewish experience, in India! Warmly welcomed by the small group who was gathered there, I joined in song where I could and guided Gala and Tim. Turns out Gala’s family has Jewish roots.
Gala and Tim were a joy to hang out with. Hearts of gold, strong social justice values and super fun spirits. Living like locals in the voluneer’s quarters, their jaws dropped at my lavish haveli. We shared a great meal, including Heather’s fabulous recommendation of dahi sev puri.
Thank you Tim.
Thank you Manav Sadhna.
Thank you India Someday
Thank you You Wander We Pay
The taxi dropped me off at the Mumbai train station for my early morning trip to Ahmedabad. I took in the beautiful transit hall and the colorful scene of people sprawled out on the ornate floors before easily (thankfully) finding my train car and seat. I knew I had found the right place but it was fun to see my name confirmed on an actual typed roster, taped to the train car’s entrance. With my feet rested upon my backpack in front of me, I leaned my head against the window to enjoy the passing scenes and the chilled mineral water and newspaper delivered to me as part of my “catered” train ride. Fascinated by the characters around me (a man with a golden headdress and shiny white hair to his waist, women carrying multiple children, and some businessmen) I tried to not to stare obviously (a common phenomena we tourists experience here.)
As the train doors opened in Ahmedebad, I took a deep breath and readied myself for adventure. I was a bit pampered in Mumbai and now I was on my own. The long lines of yellow and green rickshaws (tuk-tuks) and their drivers who called out to me, beckoning for my business, daunted me. I was prepared to put my fine negotiating skills to work and pay less than half of what they would ask. Not entirely sure we understood each other; I hopped in one of the cartoon-like open-air vehicles and began my first exposure to the CRAZY streets of this bustling city. Loud rumbling motors, constant honking and steady flows of traffic coming and going in ALL directions - cars, buses, motorbikes, camels, cows, goats, rickshaws, women, men and children - all firmly establishing their right to the road. I loved it!
We crossed the gate into the old city of Ahemedebad, working our way through the tight, windy roads, finally making it past the cows and goats before stopping in front of the French Haveli, my home (a private mansion) for the next two nights. The beautiful, 150 year old, artistically restored Gujarati heritage home offered me a very fine welcome to this action-packed city.
Sabarmati Ashram / Manav Sadhna / Toilet Cafe
Our next stop was the Sabarmati Ashram, Gandhi’s headquarters from 1917-1930. He is said to have chosen the site because of it's location between a jail and cemetery, knowing the likelihood of non-violent resisters ending up in one of the two. I enjoyed seeing where he lived and meandering the grounds. As I peaked into the adjacent property and scoped around a bit, I was warmly greeted by Tim, a volunteer at Manav Sadhna who lives in Bhutan, working for the King and his GNH – Gross National Happiness efforts.
Tim showed me around Manav Sadhna and told me about the NGO’s impressive work in Ahmedabad’s 'underprivileged' communities. It was founded in 1990 by volunteers inspired by Gandhi’s practice of serving the “antyodays” (the most neglected and marginalized) with love and compassion. It now serves more than 9000 children and women in local slum communities. The core value is Love All. Serve All.
I was elated to meet Tim and to learn more about living conditions here in India and the important work taking place. He introduced me to the volunteer coordinator – and before I knew it, I was invited to a community celebration taking place in one of the slum communities Manav Sadhna has programs. "Just show up at 11am tomorrow morning" I was told (see my next blog post!)
Tim also toured me around the adjacent Toilet Garden and Toilet Café, a showcase of 21 different types of lavatories and urinals as part of Safai Vidyalaya’s and the Environmental Sanitation Institute’s efforts to provide a better quality of life to rural peoples and the urban poor of India by improving their sanitation situation. Unfortunately the café was closed but apparently you can get paid to poop there!
Inspired and grateful, I hopped back into Mohamed’s tuk-tuk, taking in the endless honking, cows, camels, motorbikes, trucks and pretty much anything else you can imagine.
Eager to try more street food, I ventured out to the bustling Manek Chowk market and into the food bizarre area. With the awesome assistance of Mohan of the French Haveli, I was finally able to find something that looked hot enough (temperature wise) and had a big enough crowd consuming it that I decided to give it a try. Apparently Pav Bhaji is a popular Maharashtra fast food dish – a vegetable curry served with a deliciously buttered soft bread roll. A perfect choice……and I’m still not sick!
Just another fascinating day in India.
Thank you India Someday. Thank you You Wander We Pay!
Check out my post on the India Someday Blog.
So I won the You Wander We Pay contest. But for how long will I go, I wondered. A month of travel sure does sound dreamy but India is pretty far away and if I’m heading all the way over there, I know I’m going to want to spend longer and take my time. Maybe I could make it to Australia? Back to Cambodia? Trek in Nepal? A real shake-up did seem like something I was ready for, plus I hadn’t traveled for an extended period in over five years. Amazing how time flies. My seven-month trip (serious highlight of my life) which always felt like it happened just yesterday, was actually many years ago.
I tried to go the conventional route – to hang onto my City job. I requested a leave of absence and as I waited for the response, I had to keep mum about one of the most exciting pieces of news in my life, while I of course wanted to be on rooftops screaming about it! My direct supervisor was uber supportive of my leave request and shared in my excitement. Among other things, as trauma-focused social workers, we both know how important it is to be good to ourselves and make sure we have balance in our lives.
As I waited for the response, I wasn’t sure if I actually wanted the office to say yes or no! I have a complex relationship with the work and feel very connected to it (so many amazing individuals I’ve worked with, learned from and been inspired by over all these years.) Interestingly, I had already left the job (and come back) once before. The prospect of being free however, was something I dreamed about daily, not because I don’t want to work , moreso so I can be free to work on all sorts of things.
The response finally came in and I immediately felt a release of energy throughout my body. While I knew it would be sad on many levels to leave the compelling work I’ve been doing for many years, I knew this was right for me. I've learned how short life can be and felt confident I could keep my budget to a minimum and land back on two feet if I seized this amazing moment. The universe was talking to me. And so... I prepared the letter and resigned the next day!
Thank you universe.
Thank you Heather.
Thank you Jeremy.
Thank you Victim Services Unit and all of my family and friends who have been so supportive.
Thank you India Someday
Thank you YouWanderWePay.
India (and who knows where else) here I come!
When my number one travel inspirer, Heather Hope sent me the email link for a contest called #YouWanderWePay, offering a free month of expense paid travel through India, I knew I had to jump on it. Itching for a shake-up of my crazy NYC life for quite some time, yet too busy doing things I love to make it happen, I thought “wow, you better manifest this Chana….it has your name on it – and is exactly what you need!” I did enough online sniffing to uncover a handful of favorable Trip Advisor reviews of the contest sponsor, India Someday, making me comfy enough to follow the instructions of writing a sentence about India and tagging 5 people on Facebook (if I had to tag 35, I probably wouldn’t have applied!)
I followed up with an email to India Someday to express a bit more enthusiasm for the potential of this dreamy adventure. Ojas immediately got back to me and asked for some sample travel writings and photos. I certainly have no lack of rambles about my rambles, and of course have some pretty compelling photos too. I sent them off to Ojas, hopped on my bike to work and felt myself glowing as if I had already won. Once it got into my head, I was determined to make it happen… and never strayed from the possibility that I indeed could.
“Spoiler Alert….Pack Your Bags….” read the email from Ojas, after a month of me devoting oodles of mental energy to making this dream come true. I scrolled through the site a couple of times to make sure I read correctly and forwarded it to some friends to see what they thought. I then dove into a much more intense web search to determine if this was actually legit (sorta felt like Ed McMahon came to my door and just told me I won the sweepstakes!) I turned up a nice bunch of reviews and decided to contact someone who mentioned India Someday in a Huffington Post article. She wrote back immediately, sharing passionately that her trip was amazing, I should definitely go and I should send her fondest regards to the team.
Damn, this might ACTUALLY BE HAPENNING! Who would believe? A contest called You Wander We Pay! As if it literally had my name on it.
We had our first Skype call and I got to meet most of the India Someday team. I had a great feeling about them, but to top it all off, at the end of the call, they mentioned they noticed we had a mutual friend on Facebook and asked if I was actually “friends” with Jeremy. Curious about how THEY knew him, I was blown away to learn that India Someday had handled Jeremy and Gail’s honeymoon in India. I of course immediately contacted them and received yet another glowing review. When I told Jeremy that I won a crazy contest through the agency, he said “oh, I sent a link for that contest to Heather.” What? Really? I’m often technology and social-media averse, but dang, it sure did work in my favor this time around.
Thank you universe.
Thank you Heather.
Thank you Jeremy.
Thank you India Someday
Thank you YouWanderWePay.
India, here I come!
Welcome to RAMBLINARIUM!
I love to ramble...... and have been told it’s about time I create a contained space for my travel stories, life experiences and other roving thoughts. So here you have it.
My love of travel and commitment to social issues have brought me around the globe. With each nibble of street food, soak in a hot spring, entrance to a temple and splash in a river, I come alive with curiosity, excitement and awe. Yesterday, I met a solo traveler from Korea while in Udaipur, India and he asked me how many countries I’ve been to. I really had no idea but decided to scribble a quick list. It goes something like this…..
USA, Canada, Egypt, Jordan, France, Italy, Turkey, Croatia, Japan, Vietnam, Thailand, Indonesia, Singapore, Papua New Guinea, Poland, Israel, Cambodia, Laos, China, Finland, Russia, Mexico, Germany, Czech Republic, Belize, India, Belgium, Holland – and I’m sure I’m leaving some treasured haunts out. I've had me some pretty awesome experiences around the US as well and one day I hope to bike across the country.
Whether I’m in a dugout canoe in Papua New Guinea, sliding down a waterfall in North Carolina or organizing events in NYC, I live in the moment and love taking it all in. I relish opportunities to immerse myself in the nature, culture and community of each place. Getting to know local people and environmental/social issues is key for me, and I ‘m always excited to get involved and do some work too.
And so the blog begins.
Welcome to my ramblings!
A social worker…..working socially, around the globe.