I’ve officially reached the level of self expression of a 16 year old. While most might think, as I’m nearing 30, that this would be a regression, I wholeheartedly disagree. As a little girl I desperately wanted more than anything to be a tomboy, feeling great fulfillment when my brother and his friends called me one not knowing I loved it. As a teenager I was always a square, running between biathlon and, well, running. In university I was busy looking the part to fit in for my waitressing job in a cocktail bar with sorely lacking advice from my also-very-square boyfriend at the time. And finally, as an adult, for the last many years I’ve fit the role of corporate air traveler (as much as I thought I loved them, I do not miss those pencil skirts or heels as I sit here in my $3 thrift store dress and clunky Birkenstocks).
At a market a few weeks ago I had a street artisan put a wire coil in my hair and bought a super beautiful black and white feather. Just the touch to make it known I’m my own woman (and that I’m unemployed).
With this feather I’m writing from the beach in Palomino, a place full of magic at the foot of the sacred Sierra Nevada mountains, the port from the sea to jungle, with the background music of humming mosquitoes and the ocean crashing into cliffs of sand.
My return to this part of the world was to rejoin some friends, however plans are constantly in flux and I haven’t completely decided where I’ll go next. The beauty of this place is that you don’t really have to decide. It’s un lugar muy especial… though it’s also an exercise to get comfortable with as there’s nothing really to do here. Sit at the beach, listen to the waves, do yoga on the beach. Sleep. Make lunch. Write. That’s about it. Add that my Spanish hasn’t improved drastically so I’m constantly drifting out of group conversations, it could be a lonely experience. Instead I look at it as a practical equivalent to Elizabeth Gilbert’s La Dolce Vita experience in Eat Pray Love when she works at doing absolutely nothing. Entonces, I’m not doing nothing – I’m in training.
At night I sleep in a hammock 100 meters from the beach, with an interesting group. There’s a maestro sculpurist with a glorious white mane of hair and artsy goatee, a sullen French woman who is actually quite friendly if you catch her after she’s eaten, and funny enough, I’ve run into Jhon Fredy again. I knew he’d be in this general area, but by this point, it’s beyond coincidence to keep finding him. In usual Fredy-fashion he seems to be well nourished by various people on his path that are inspired by his presence. In the last few weeks he’s been given an iPhone, new clothes and many nights of room and board. Walking proof that the universe always provides, even if you do dress like you’re a nomad/unemployed/wear a feather in your hair.