Travel

place in this world.

For some of us, it is not the easiest thing to find our physical place in this world (important song from my formative years), what feels most like home. For me, it is an amalgam of lots of special, favorite places that I've been or dreamed about. I've discovered that geographic location/environment is an important value of mine, and while I've lived in a variety of places and settings, I certainly haven't thrived in all of them.

My utopian community would currently make up the best combination of: London and small town England, Austin, San Francisco, Portland, lakes and parks of Vermont/Upstate NY, Playa del Carmen, Mexico, Aruba, Costa del Sol, Spain, and New Zealand. Coincidentally these are almost all places I've lived in or spent time traveling to. Laugh I enjoy other cites too: NYC, DC, Philly, Boston etc. but I'm trying to be specific about exactly what calls to me.

I love the history, charm, way of life in England (and the accents!), the live music community, food, and outdoor life in Austin, and its inclusive, active culture of all ages. Among many things, I love San Francisco's vibrancy, hills, healthy food/quality of life, diversity, retro and vintage shopping, public transportation, cool weather, coast, and trees. I like how I can be myself. I spent a good amount of time there in my early twenties visiting my best friend from college and her brother, and didn't get a chance to move there like we had planned.

I love Portland's creative energy, inspiration and walkability. The rolling hills, lakes, and neighborhoods of Vermont and Upstate New York feel like home to me. I hail from the northeast, and that is definitely baked into my soul, with a love of cloudy cooler weather and four seasons, older homes and buildings, and overall aesthetic. Arizona, for example, while I lived there and enjoyed many things about it, did not feel like home to me, just a unique place to visit.

The European presence and friendly, fun vibe in Playa is amazing, the soft Aruba beaches and breeze is the best combination, and Costa del Sol is brimming with tasty food and the Mediterranean laid-back lifestyle. I haven't been to New Zealand yet, but I crave its calm, beautiful, nature and health driven culture.

No doubt as I continue to travel I will find more and more spots to occupy little pieces of my heart (Italy, I'm coming for you Happy)! No place is truly a home without people, and that is an important factor as we get older and close friends and family become scattered about the globe. We make sacrifices with the environment for people sometimes for sure, and for good reason.

We owe it to ourselves to determine where we best fit, where we most come alive and fully express our best selves. Moving and trying different places is part of figuring it out; even by process of elimination, core needs come to the surface about what kind of community we want to be a part of (from the pics I found, clearly food is an important part of my equation ;D)... When do you know you are
home?


GF orange almond cake at Vegetalia's in Spain, May 2005
veg

My friend Ry guy and I eating Dosa in San Francisco this week, August 2014
ry


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on attitude & perspective

Attitudes are self-created. You are free to choose to be victimized by circumstance or people, or you can choose to look at life with an open mind and be victorious. No one else can choose your attitude for you. Your perspective and choice of attitude gives you the power to be in control. That is the essence of true freedom. ~ Irene Dunlap


This was one of my favorite quotes I hung in my cabin when I was a camp counselor at Camp Oasis, a camp for kids with Crohn's and Colitis. There were others too that I brought with me to decorate the walls and the girl's minds, wrote with markers on colorful construction paper that my mom and friend John helped me make, some that I still have hanging on my wall in my office below, reminding me of that experience.

I paid over $1000 to volunteer at this camp, all told, in the summer of 2006 in St. Louis, MO- now that is saying something! They say you should ask yourself what you would do for free, or if money was no object- and whatever it is, do that. I've certainly volunteered for a lot of camps over the years, so it will most definitely be a part of my what-I'm-going-to-be-when-I-grow-up plan!

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gluten free pizza slices in portland!

www.pizzicatopizza.com

So excited to be here in PDX for a few days on vacation. It’s glorious and so inspiring. Really great to be playing on computer for fun for once, it’s been WAY too long! Good to be back. Vacation is essential to our health!

PS: This quote has been staring at me from my new favourite
magazine Experience Life (Being Healthy Is a Revolutionary Act): “The energy it takes to ignore an inner longing is greater than the leap of faith it takes to move you in the direction of your dreams.” The title and tagline of this magazine is brilliant!

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