Friday, December 19, 2008

From North to South, From Outer to Inner

We have spent the past few days in Kerela in a quaint heritage home where our hosts not only cook for us but they sing, play guitar, entertain, and keep us good company. We have not ventured out into the back waters because the garden in this house is to gorgeous to depart. We met some amazing people both here and in Rishekesh. We found some wonderful travelers and trekked to a beautiful mountain temple. We were blessed and then made our way home 2.5 hours down the mountain with a local Baba (Rambo Baba) as our guide. We met some monkeys along the way. There has been much singing and playing. Daily morning meditation continues. My impression of Rishekesh is that it is indeed a very holy and healing place and that one could definelty spend years there and not realize that life elsewhere was happening. It is a very strong vortex and part of me is glad we were there short term. We met many people who had come and stayed. We met many people escaping their lives and altering their consciousness. We have had lots of opportunity to get high. I say no thanks. We get pretty high on our own. We met with an Indian astrologer who rocked our worlds. He was quite accurate with what the stars had indicated to him through our chart. The Ganges was bright and blue, the night time winds were powerful and cleansing. We met some travelers that may come to Thailand to play with us. Our places to stay have been clean and the beds firm. Not too many bugs sleeping with us. None that we can see or feel anyway. We are primed for our Vipassana. 10 days of silence. No reading, writing, talking, gesturing, eye contact. A complete inner exploration. I will say happy holidays to you now and see you next year. We continue to be blessed with meeting wonderful people, awesome places to stay, reasonable food, much laughter, good play. We are guided by a force far more gracious than I could have anticipated and the beauty we are taking in brings me peace about the beauty that resides within me. Much love to all of you. LOVE LOVE LOVE. Light ahead to each of us for our day to day adventures, be they grand or small. Perfect timing. Perfect lives.
XO Laurel

Shots of India

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Breathing in Rishekesh

This is our first official day unhosted in India. Alyssa and I woke up this morning and continued with our morning meditation and own version of Satsang and then took showers and proceeded to lounge around our beautiful room letting our hair dry in the sun pouring through our window like two cats sated with life. We have the most spectacular view of the Ganges. Rishekesh has its own healing magic and on this evening of our first day "alone" we have already made fast friends who we plan to hike with tomorrow.
In reflecting on our time at the orphanage Alyssa and I have decided that when we get home our welcome home party will be a fundraiser for these children. There are 19 altogether. The youngest is 5 months old. She was recently rescued and is presently in the states getting surgery to repair her cleft palate. The oldest is 14. The children start their day at 4:30am. They chant and pray for an hour then the older girls prepare food for the day. All are off to school then home by 2:00pm for lunch. Homework until 5:00pm. Another hour of chanting at 5:30, dinner thereafter, washing of feet, brushing of teeth, then off to bed. Six to eight children share a bedroom appoximately 10 x 8 feet. We were there for 5 days and saw the children change clothes just once. They live minimally. They wait until everyone has been served before they eat, which often takes 5 minutes or so. They recite the most harmonic prayer for the food, life, and for the sponsers of the orphanage. They eat in silence as a way of expressing gratitude. In the days that we were there laughter was the mainstay and curiosity was their way. Each gave a generous hug as we departed and some said they would pray for us. I think I will see some of them again. Life is perfection. I am blessed as are these sweet beings. One to another to comfort, to ease, to play.
Hari Om. Love love love, Laurel

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Gratitude and Perfect Timing

Our first post inner India. We are still safe in India. A 9 hour flight from San Fran to London, a 12 hour layover (see Picadilly Circus), an 8 hour flight to New Delhi. No sleep along the way, which actually helped in getting adjusted to the massive time difference. We were met by Pramila Gupta at the airport, she was holding a sign with our names on it. She is mother to Uday Gupta, classmate from USM. Speaking of...we gave a mindful communication workshop Monday to some employees of the Guptas. It went very well. USM tools around the world. New Dehli and the Gupta's made for a seamless transition to India. The house was beautiful and the hospitality unsurpassed. I went to my first Indian wedding. It was on of 35,000 that weekend in India or was it Delhi? Needless to say, it was a huge event and the colors were incredible. We saw some sites, ate very well at the Gupta home, slept like little babies, and eased into what Mr Gupta calls order in the chaos that is India. We are now in Dehra Dun visiting the children of the CED orphanage. You can read about them on a site at (I think). The children have been rescued from the border town of Dolpo in Tibet and have all made a 45 day trek to be at there new home here in Dehra Dun. The kids met us will smiles, hugs, and kisses when we arrived. You can feel all of the love in the orphanage, in their eyes, and in their shy smiles. We are filled with gratitude for all of the love and support that has been given to us along the journey thus far. These children are some of the most interesting people I have meet and we look foward to playing with them more, learning from them, and teaching them.
Love Love Love Laurel

I am loving waking up to The Power of Now, followed by our 20 min. morning meditations. Laurel and I both started it around the same time without telling each other and it's rocking our worlds! New experiences, elevated reading, silence, chaos, connection, trying on new ways of Being and playing...this is what I came here to experience. We are so blessed and have been witness to the countless angels that have help everything perfectly flow together.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Heading to the airport

We leave from San Fran today with a 12 hour layover in London...arrive in New Delhi in two days or so.  Alyssa just ate a banana and had her last kombucha.  I have had nothing yet.  So very excited and nervous.  My backpack only weighs 30 lbs...bonus.  We are going to Gratitude Cafe on our way out of town to meet one of Alyssa's girlfriends.  We didn't meditate this morning, maybe on the plane. I love my new I-touch.  I prefer technology that I can comprehend, but love the music. Feeling frantic and wishing my last official note in California was more eloquent.  Surrender.

love love love,
A and L

ridiculousness gets tired

Love You

ridiculousness continues...

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Ridiculousness Erupts

Our last night in America

Hi All,
We have taken a break from packing our back packs to get out our first post.  We are sitting at Judy Nobriga's kitchen table and while I'm writing Alyssa is going through the paperwork that we need in order to be organized for the next four months.  Is this trip really possible? I suppose time will tell.  Our itinerary is India for 6 weeks, Thailand for 3, Bali for 4, Australia 2, New Zealand 3.  We come home April 4th. Expect a big party on the other side of this adventure.  Thank you all for your love and support.  We have so many blessing to be grateful for, and we are grateful.  

much love,
A & L

Dec. 2 2008