Enough

30 May

I have been at my latest housesit for a little over a month right now. And as the time has passed I am noticing a theme emerge… it is…enough.

When I was in the midwest visiting with my mom, I was keeping my eye out for the next thing. A few things came and went that didn’t seem like quite the right fit. When the opportunity came to come to Austin for this long-term sit, I was excited by the possibility but wasn’t 100% sure if it would be a great fit for me. I checked in with my long-time mentor and Reiki teacher, Elizabeth Pellegrin. She has been a great guide for connecting me with and trusting my own intuition as well as providing rich insights of her own. So when she checked in intuitively, the advice she gave me about this new opportunity was that it wasn’t “perfect” or even “ideal” but that it would be enough.

Enough seemed good enough for me and so I happily accepted the offer and made my way down to Austin. In the first few days of being here I ran into a few unexpected things in the house that I just didn’t like. In earnest I felt that possibly they were unworkable. And I thought “this is enough?” because in that moment, it sure didn’t seem like enough to me! I wrestled with myself, with the situation, felt frustrated and angry. But I also looked for solutions to the problem at hand, received a few helpful tips from Elizabeth, and tried a few things of my own.

I kept going with it in part because there were so many things I liked about this housesit and were really very workable! Now here I am a few weeks later and for now the obstacle, the unwanted circumstance is much improved. And resolved in a way that I am okay with. In retrospect I think, wow, I sure am glad I didn’t give up and worked through that obstacle because now I get to enjoy all of the reasons I came and the things I liked about the sit to begin with. And I thought, it really is enough! And yes I did have to overcome an obstacle to get here, but it was worth it!

And so now I am on the threshold of another little new beginning and once again that question was asked of me, is it enough? And I have considered… there seems to be a theme here.

I had a bit of a breakthrough as I was washing my hair, as sometimes happens, that all of this not enoughness, all of this moving into new life circustmances that are good in many ways but fallable in some ways, is not just my rich lesson in what is enough… it is also my rich lesson that… I am enough.

In many ways these past few years during quarantine I think I was in a long incubation phase…being with, experiencing, being alarmed at times and alchemizing so much of my inner world and now I am just beginning to emerge out. In recent years I think I have grown in experiencing and sharing the shiny things in my world and my life – the things I delight in and want all to see. But what lingered was… the other stuff. The parts that felt broken, unlovable, embarassing and all. And I didn’t yet know how to emerge forward in the midst of all of that… the good and the … ya know, less mentionable stuff.

And I think this moving through enoughness is a great step on this wobbly road I am on, that is not always “perfect” or in the way I wish or want. It breaks me open so that things can crumble, so that all can be exposed and I can work with what remains.

What remains for me is… enough… and beginning to explore working with the circumstances in my life, warts and all, moving through and being with the challenging and also appreciating the unmistakable good and benefits. In doing this, ultimately I am creating a similar space for myself to move forward in life…being enough. Not perfect. Not ideal. Some real unexpected challenges and things I’d rather not deal with… but still… enough.

And so that’s where I am for today as I prepare to take a new little step on this quiet Memorial Day. Basking in the nervousness, the brokenness and the allness of being in the wake, in the dust of… I am not perfect but I am…enough.

Hello Austin

26 Apr

After a long winter hibernation in my mom’s home in the midwest, I have freshly arrived at my latest housesit in Austin, TX.  In my recent years of house and pet sitting, Austin has become a bit of a second base, a hub of sorts. And though it’s been a little while since I have been here, it’s nice to return.

Presently I am nestled in the heart of Austin a little south of the river and downtown.  I lived in Austin for a few years back in 2005 after the floods from the levee breach of Hurricane Katrina sent me and the whole city packing. I am freshly reminded how much Austin has boomed and continues to boom since my residence there some years ago. My current neighborhood has largely given way to new sleek modern homes with a few dots and blocks of funky old Austin bungalows remaining. As I drive around to reacquaint myself with the city, much of it can feel foreign to me with glimpses of remembrance of old funky Austin.

My housesits in the Austin area in recent years have mostly been in the outskirts and surrounding burbs and towns. While I am not one lately to be drawn to the hustle and bustle in the center of things, I still appreciate my latest abode with it’s old Austin charm tucked in a funky tree-lined neighborhood safely nestled in the heart of the city. The neighborhood has a simple, earthy feel to it and the quiet streets are frequented by neighbors leisurely walking by with their dogs, friends, children.

And so begins the latest chapter of my extended escapade. I made the gentle three-day trek arriving almost a week ago. I took my time on the way down from the Kansas City area stopping near Tulsa, Oklahoma, my old stomping grounds from college which is becoming more and more long ago. I was happy to take a little time to connect for lunch with a college friend in Tulsa who settled in the area.

Next, I took a stop in Wichita Falls Texas to tend to a few things including connecting with my appreciated Texas mail handler, Texas Home Base. I also stopped by a friend’s house for a quick visit.  As strange coincidences would go, a Korean friend I worked with at English Village in South Korea now resides in Texas! So it was great and out of the ordinary to have an opportunity to connect in Texas!

Technically, I did not stay in Wichita Falls, but about 20 minutes out of town in Electra, Texas.  I stayed in a simple but sweet and workable airbnb tiny cabin.  I had a few minutes to connect with the owner, Anthony, who went out of his way to be of service while I was there. If you’re traveling through North Texas, it’s a great spot for a little affordable and comfortable respite along the way! 

I am sporting a new vehicle. After selling my beloved 1998 Honda CRV before departing for Hawaii, I am oh so grateful to have another CRV. This one is a bit of a newer model, a 2012.  Also silver. Sort of a Gypsywoman 2.0 mobile. My new CRV is officially a “Texas Girl” now and while adjustments are always necessary with the latest change, we are both happy to be here.

It’s a quiet, not too hot day in Austin. I can feel the city’s funky vibe at my doorstep and appreciate hearing the sounds of the water fountain in the backyard.  It’s been raining since yesterday, but this afternoon has given way to some sun and satisfying but not too hot gentle heat.

So long for now from the beginning of this next step. Taking my time to be and allowing myself to settle a bit, tune in and relax into the latest rhythm of my journey.

Photo: A quick visit to Austin’s well-loved Barton Springs

Leaving Summer

26 Jan

Well, about a month ago… I left Hawaii. My housesit on the Big Island began as a month-long sit and was extended… and then extended again. In the end I was there for an unexpected four months. There were so many things that I loved about the sit – the bevy of tropical plants on the property that covered us up like a blanket, the two very sweet kitties who spent their days chasing geckos and returned home for late afternoon dinner like clockwork, the constant blue skies and warm sunny days, the wild open feeling of the surrounding lava desert landscape and of course the beach. You can’t forget about the beach!  I was fortunate to have been on Oahu and the Big Island long enough to where the beach became… sort of a normal thing to me, a beautiful appreciated backdrop to daily life. The beach closest to my housesit has a regular assembly of local sea turtles who became part of my regular crew and errands… you know, go to the grocery store, stop by the beach and visit with the sea turtles.  All in a day.

While there were many good things on my sit there was also an assortment of elements that were a little out of the ordinary. Towards the end there were a bundle of things happening at the house and so when the homeowner offered to return home, for a variety of reasons it just felt like the right time to depart.

The night before the homeowner returned there was an out of the ordinary pet sitting adventure. It was Sunday evening and it was dinner time and the sweet boy kitty wasn’t home for dinner. This had happened once or twice before, but it really wasn’t like him. I called for him and called for him. In the distance I heard this very faint “meow” and it led me to the corner of the main house right by the entrance we used to come in and out. As I got closer I heard him… coming from the top edge of the roof but I couldn’t see him.  It seemed he was somehow inside the roof but I couldn’t quite tell where he was.

Because of fences, the studio apartment next to the main house and the layout, I had to run around the houses and through the back yard to get a closer look. Again I heard him clearly coming from within the roof. There was a ladder nearby and I leaned it up to the house, climbed up and was able to see more clearly. There was a narrow (about seven inches or so) corridor on the outside perimeter of the roof that he had crawled into. The roof was slightly slanted and there was an opening on one end but not on the other. It seemed he was able to find his way in, but not get out.

While I was up on the roof I called to him and he wriggled himself back, came to the edge and came up against a plastic covered wire or piping for the house that was in the way. As he came up against that with his back body, I think it scared him and he felt he couldn’t get out and so he would scurry back the other way. He tried again and did the same thing.

I was so upset! It seemed he was stuck in the roof! It was almost 5:00pm and not much sunlight left and it felt important to get him out before the sun went down. There were no neighbors around and I reached out to the trusted friend nearby several times who was not available. So I took a chance and I called the fire department.  😉  At first they said they didn’t respond to such things, but then called back and said they’d like to see if they could help.

When they arrived and came to the back they tried some gentle things to encourage him to find his way out. But time and again when he got to the end he was unable to make his way out.  They left sorry they couldn’t help but thought that the cat would find his own way out. By this time I had also spoken to the homeowner and she too thought he would find his way out and felt confident he would be okay if he was in there for the night. The trusted neighbor friend had also come by and would make plans for some contractor friends to come help the next day if he didn’t get out on his own.

When the next morning came he was still stuck in there. Soon the friends and helpers came and without too much ado were able to turn a few screws and simply lift up the metal roof to give him enough space to be free and he leapt out. Thank God. Not your ordinary pet sitting experience!  He ran off for a while but in his good regular way, was back in the afternoon for dinner and his kitty life continued.

The homeowner returned that day, just a quick flight from the pacific coast to return to the Big Island. A few days later I, once again, packed up my bags like Mary Poppins and headed on my way.

It was December 22, just a few days before Christmas, and I was grateful that my mom opened up her doors for me to come. Honestly, it felt so good to come back to the midwest. It felt good to see my mom and be connected with family. And it felt good to be in the center of a large mass of land and take in the simple, gentle landscape. I enjoyed unpacking my modest assortment of winter clothes and taking in my first snow of the season.

I am still here at my mom’s and since I have arrived we have seen the second and third snows of the season. For those who like astrology, Mercury is in Retrograde, not a time for big change or moving forward, and it has felt natural to stay warm and tucked away.

With all that is going on in the world and going on within me, it has felt like a time to take stock and revisit some basic things for myself, my life and my world.  It is also another juncture of uncertainty, something I have likely had more experience with than the average person.  And while in earnest it isn’t always easy to ride the highs and lows and ups and downs of the wave of this life, I have also learned to a greater degree that having some space for uncertainty can serve me to allow room for what’s next to take shape.

So here I am again in the Midwest, a little startled by the cold after almost a year in Hawaii. Grateful for a comfortable place to land as I wonder, consider and be with “what’s next.”

Farewell for now, surfing through Mercury retrograde – which goes direct February 3rd!  What is up in your world?  Always great to hear from you!

Waiko “blowa”

23 Oct

It’s a Saturday afternoon and I am hanging out at my current housesit on the Big Island of Hawaii. In true ”Kona-side” style, the sun is shining brightly. It’s a beautiful afternoon just in the mid-80s and the afternoon heat isn’t hitting hard today like it does sometimes. It’s also a still afternoon, unusual for this windy little community nicknamed Waiko”blowa.”  I read a joke saying how windy is it in Waikoloa?  It’s so windy that when the wind stops blowing, the cows tip over.  Of course, not many cows right here where I am. But there are plenty of wild goats and boars to see dotted all over the landscape while driving about.

I went on my favorite Saturday morning outings today. As a food nerd and someone who really loves to collect and eat healthy organic food and as someone who’s health and well-being depend on it, as usual I happily spend a chunk of my time hunting and gathering healthy food. On Saturday mornings in the nearby town of Waimea, Big Island, there are three Farmers Markets going on in the community including the Waimea Town Market and the Kamuela Farmers Market. Waimea is at about 2500 ft. elevation, a little 30-minute climb up the mountain from my location, so it’s a nice departure from the heat down below with cooler weather and often some lovely low lying clouds and sometimes, of course, fierce winds. But not much wind today. Just lovely quiet space, the beauty of outstretched nature and me on my mission to gather some food for the week.

Today I tried someplace new in Waimea and went the the Waimea Butcher Shop. It was a great local spot filled with only the highest quality fresh local meats, never any antibiotics or hormones added, and humanely raised. I got a few simple items and could really see and feel the quality. Plus, always great to buy from a little local shop.

While I am often on my own out here in Waika“blowa” my sense so far of Big Island culture is that it is very laid back. The island itself is still pretty raw and lightly populated, so it seems folks who live here experience more of an “island” life than Oahu. There are fewer goods, fewer resources, fewer people to do all the things that you might want or need people to do. And oh yeah, it’s expensive. More expensive than Oahu which surprised me but I suppose makes sense.


It does seem that the Big Island filled with many long-term locals is being more dotted and inundated with newcomers from the mainland. If they’re anything like me, perhaps they are bringing some of their mainland expectations of how things “should” be from store supplies to internet and phone reception and perhaps also like me need to take at least a little time to adjust and dial back some of those ways.

My days are filled with simple things. Caring for kitties. Time in the garden. Trips to the beach. Preparing simple yummy meals and movie breaks.  I also spend some of my time on my spiritual adventures which include of course my practice of Reiki and more recently tuning into folks like Lee Harris and reaping the benefits of their wisdom and unmistakable energetic lift from the work.

And I am here for now. What started as a one-month sit has shifted into a longer agreement as there have been some unexpected turns in the needs of my current homeowners away on the mainland. While many things are out of the ordinary here, there is certainly something in me that is opened up and somewhat at home in this raw lava dessert by the ocean.

So that’s it for now from me. How are things in your world?

Beauty of the Big Island

17 Sep

It’s a windy day in my little corner of the world on the Big Island of Hawaii. I landed here just a few weeks ago in a small island leap to begin a new housesit. I am nestled in a little neighborhood located between the mountains of Mauna Kea and Kohala. The tradewinds blowing from the northeast are known for stirring up some dust in my new temporary neighborhood so here I am watching the wind blow. I am tucked away in a little studio apartment just next door to the main house where I am caring for a tough but sweet ginger kitty and a sassy pretty calico.

When I arrived at the small open air airport on the Big Island, it felt a little more “island style” than my original more contemporary arrival in Honolulu. I was greeted by a totally new landscape and wide open spaces.

I have heard others say that each of the islands have their own distinct personality. And while this is only my second island of Hawaii to experience so far, I can say truly that it is oh so different from Oahu. The biggest difference to immediately notice of course is that… it’s Big! No more dashing from one end to the other in under about an hour. At my current location on the big island it’s about a 30 – 45 minutes drive just to get to the surrounding towns and the landscape is miles and miles of lava desert christened by the beauty of the surrounding ocean. It can be quite a thrill for me simply driving in this new landscape, the sun shining, the wind blowing and the beauty of this foreign terrain surrounding me. Like my new house sitting host said, it’s like being on the moon!

The Big Island is roughly six times larger than Oahu. From my current location I can wiz off the the city of Hilo in about an hour. Hilo is in fact the rainiest city in the United States and after a bit of reading I learned it rains mostly at night which feeds the rich and lush landscape. In about 45 minutes I am in the famous tourist town Kailua-Kona known for it’s sunny days, warmer climate and very little rain.

My new housesit is in a little neighborhood development located in the midst of the lava desert surrounded by miles and miles of this open landscape. It has it’s own little grocery store, gas station and other services. Beyond this little village, the neighbors are scattered five and ten miles away in the shape of beachside resort communities which speckle the Kona coast featuring golf courses, grocery stores and specialty shops plus beach access open to the public. It’s a little decadent to have so many crystal blue beaches conviently located like the neighborhood 7-11.

As a full-time traveling house and pet sitter, there are plenty of times when I find myself less inclined to hunt out a new adventure and content with the simpler things like preparing meals, finding the best grocery stores and tending to the day to day needs of the pets and housesit all within the beauty of a new backdrop. In my new housesit I am enjoying the comfort zone of my new place, the fresh (but windy!) ocean air and the dependable beauty of the blues skies. And of course I can’t forget the simple pleasure of the ocean which I take a dip in frequently, can see off in the distance from my current housesit and blankets most of my day to day traveling about town.

Bye for now from the quiet windy days on the Big Island as my journey in Hawaii continues!


Time to Unwind

10 Jul

It’s a quiet day in my little corner of Oahu. It’s Saturday and I’ve enjoyed the luxury of settling in a bit, extended time relaxing in bed and then getting organized and sorting things a bit. I have to be honest, for me everything is a little better in Hawaii. Even a Saturday at home cleaning and organizing can feel pretty good. The beautiful blue sky, the drizzles of rain sneaking through the sky on a perfectly sunny day. While I am not on a beach at my current location, you can feel the ocean just going outside – some sort of additional lightness permeating the air and feeding the soul. While cleaning today I felt inspired to put on a little Billy Joel and couldn’t help but feel my father, who passed away seven year ago, smiling down on me as I danced and sang to those familiar songs of my youth.

I am so grateful to have returned for “round two” of housesitting on Oahu. With things in the country and world opening up, the island has picked up quite a bit. But for the most part, I still remain with my steady beat. A gentle pace. Enjoying time on the homefront and adventures out in nature and around the island.

This past Thursday I was at one of my favorite beaches, Kailua Beach, just enjoying the day. Ah so good. As someone who arrived here first during the quiet of quarantine, it is quite something to take in the difference. Summer has arrived. I couldn’t help but take in the pure joy and enthusiasm I felt amongst the crowds on the beach. So happy to be there. So much enthusiasm for being out in the joy of Hawaii and summer. It felt like a celebration.

Not long ago I was fortunate to join a little meditation group in the community where I am housesitting. With so much time on my own housesitting in the midst of the odd year, this little group is a gentle venture back out into the world. This time a bit separate from it all plus being in Hawaii has been the perfect mixture to continue to nurture and enjoy the beauty of being connected within. And the meditation group feels like a way of beginning to celebrate that joy in earnest with others.

Like many I have felt my own growing pains along the way. But equally so is the appreciation of the growing wisdom and insights as I explore and understand further what works for me, what makes me tick and some notions of what will serve me as we emerge back into the world… in our own way, at our own pace. Each of us altered by the experience.

I had a little chat at the beach the other day with a mom from Boston. In even just a casual conversation, I couldn’t help but feel a sense of connection in the shared experience that all of us have been through in the last year.

Here are a few photos from this time on Oahu to bring a little of her joy, celebration and beauty your way! So grateful to be here. So grateful for this time!

Return to the Islands

17 May

It’s been a while since I have dropped a line to share a bit of my story and journey. The truth is for me with so much shift, change, questions and uncertainty happening in the world around us I find I have equally the same stirrings on the inside. It feels like a good time, even a necessary time, to step back a little further, reflect, and be with all the whacky feelings and adjustments on the inside as well as those whirling about in the world right now. 

The good news is that I am back in Hawaii. When I returned to Texas a few months ago, I knew it was likely I would get to return to resume my wonderful housesit on Oahu just beyond Honolulu. My time in Texas was appreciated but just the same filled with a fair share of modest discomforts, ups and downs. Some of that was merely the adjustment to “not being in Hawaii” after three months of softer energy, warm moderate weather, tropical landscapes, blue skies and rainbows around every bend. But still there were many things I appreciated about my Texas respite nestled in my sweet little temporary abode.

As my time in Texas was growing to a close, I faced once again the dilemma of what to do with my car. There was no obvious choice of a workable place to keep it long term that was also close to my current location outside Austin, TX.  So I looked about for options, drove myself a little mad and in the end just shouted a prayer out for help and let it go.

In the wake of this, as things sometimes go, I found myself at a local storage facility exploring the option to park it long term. While he didn’t have any parking space available, as “fate” would have it… he was interested in buying my car. So I just went with it, we took it for a spin and by the end of the day he made an offer to buy it. And another day later, it was done. My car was sold and I would soon be off to Hawaii again.

In the midst of this adjustment, I had just a few more things to tend to. Prior to my first trip to Hawaii I had already slimmed down my modest collection of belongings that I kept in my SUV as I drove about the country from housesit to housesit. Now with my car sold and just a very small load – a few plastic bins, some bedding and a few other miscellaneous items – I had to make some quick new choices before I departed for Hawaii. With such a modest amount of items, it didn’t make sense to rent a storage unit. So I took another small leap and got down to the nitty gritty with sorting out the last of my belongings and would only keep what I could pack in my suitcases. I sent a small box to my mom, mailed a few things to a friend and the rest went to the local thrift store.

It did my heart good to see the little tokens of my journey I kept and tucked away in my suitcases. The hand carved wooden spatula from a Christmas market in Vienna, the weathered picture map of Chiang Mai, my magnet collection from all of my destinations, and a modest bag of coins tracking my journey.

I have been back in Oahu for a few weeks now. Arriving this time around was different. It was good to return but still an adjustment to living on a small island after hunkering down in the big state of Texas for a few months.  It was a bit of an odd feeling as I still felt new, but yet also familiar. I felt like less of a tourist and had less of an urge to run out and explore everything and more of a desire to hunker down and lay low.

That said, there is certainly something in my heart and soul that is just undeniably blown away by the tropical beauty of the island. It is an unmistakable pleasure to have the luxury to just take off to the North Shore for the afternoon, sink into the sand and bask in the beauty of the incoming waves and surrounding mountains and landscape.

It does seem that traffic has returned to Oahu since I was last here.  Places that I casually went to before are now loaded with folks and it seems that this time around a little more strategy will be needed to avoid the crowds and even…. simply get a parking spot. That said, I certainly consider myself fortunate to have had a pocket of time here when there really weren’t many people around.

And today, well, it’s a beautiful day.  It’s warm but there’s a gentle breeze outside keeping things feeling soft and cool. The yellow trumpet flowers are blossoming out back.  And earlier with a practically clear blue sky, it was raining… what I have heard described as liquid sunshine.

So I will leave you for now – hunkered down and happy in Hawaii.  How are things in your neck of the woods?  It’s always good to hear from you!

At Home in Texas

17 Mar

It’s a coolish, almost spring morning and I am bundled under the covers in my temporary home in Texas.  With a bit of chagrin, I got on a plane a few weeks ago, left Hawaii at the completion of my housesit and returned to Texas for now.

Admittedly, there were some “good feelings” to returning to Texas.  It was… comforting in some ways to return to a more substantial mass of land and more “traditional” American life.  I landed in the Austin area and beyond where I find the land in the outlying areas grounding and comforting. The weather has been… a little bit of an adjustment. Thankfully I returned post “snowmageddon” but still cold to me after three months on Oahu! I broke out my fall and winter clothes which were grateful to receive a little attention like my lovely flowered scarf from Austria, my warmer merino wool sweaters and flannel pjs.

I have landed for now in a longer-term airbnb about an hour outside of Austin. It’s a sweet old home that was an original home in this area and the center of a dairy farm at its origin. The current owners and hosts have gone out of their way to be welcoming and helpful. I am fortunate to have the company of a small collection of deer who take daily respite in the backyard plus a modest assortment of curious neighborhood cats.

This time for me is a bit of a “pit stop.” Time to tend to some of the practicals of life for mind, body and soul. Time to reset, ponder and consider a bit in the midst of some down time with new possibilities on the horizon.

In the interim I am revisiting an “old friend” in the book The Artist’s Way.  I have joined up with a remote group of folks through a connection from when I was housesitting in Lawrence, KS.  It feels so good to revisit some of the Artist’s Way tools like the Morning Pages and affirmations.  It seems like a perfect time to give a little attention to strolling along on this gentle journey.

So for now, grateful and happy for a place to land. Comforted in the quiet brisk morning and the sun shining.  And satisfied in some of the simple joys in life, soulful pleasures and the stirring of new possibilities.

In Love with Oahu

1 Dec

Well I did it. I packed up my stuff. Got rid of some of it. Managed to fit way more essential oils and supplements into my suitcases than I imagined I could and hit the road. Only this time I didn’t quite hit the road…. because I couldn’t.  Instead I boarded an airplane and was island bound. I am in Hawaii.

Recently I hit a barren patch on my house sitting journey and was grateful to be nestled for a few weeks in the midwest in my mother’s home. In the midst of this limbo time I did what I have learned and continue to learn to do… take a step back and allow things to unfold. And unfold they did. Quite unexpectedly. As it sometimes happens on my journey, in the blink of an eye I had two new housesits on my plate which brought a quick redirection. First stop, a return to Austin for a month-long housesit. Second stop, a housesit on the island of Oahu.

I knew there was a possibility out there that a housesit could come together in Hawaii. I made a connection through an on-line gathering of a spiritual community I enjoy. They mentioned they may have a need for a housesitter in the coming months. As someone with experience with things ebbing and flowing, coming and going… I was grateful for the possibility, stayed open to it but also had no expectation or attachments that it would or wouldn’t work out.

And then one day it happened. I got the word. What do you do when someone invites you to housesit in Hawaii?  You say “Yes, please! Thank you!”

Don’t get me wrong…as much as my life has gone with the flow this past decade, I did run into my share of rough currents, resistance to change and sometimes in earnest just pure exhaustion from so much packing, unpacking and driving about. Despite the “inconvenience” of it all, my heartfelt yes quickly aligned my life in a new direction.

Also, notably so, this is my first housesitting departure where I didn’t drive my little SUV packed with the essentials of this life on the go.  As I would leave my wheels behind, I started the process of hmming and hawing over what to keep, what to leave behind and what to take along.  I was fortunate to find a spot to keep my car and remaining belongings while I am away and so now here I am!

With Hawaii’s new Safe Travels program, it was easier than I imagined to get here. I took a COVID test within 72 hours of my departing flight at an Austin Walgreens and got my negative results the same day.  From there I just needed to upload my results, complete the health survey 24 hours before departure and get my QR code.

I flew Delta airlines as I read they were tops in their COVID practices. They have updated their filter system and on my flight from Austin to LAX you could see the air from the filter circulating about like a sci-fi movie. Delta is also currently keeping the middle seat open and from LAX to Honolulu I had the whole row to myself. I slept most of the way, presented my QR code on arrival and as simple as pie I had arrived.

I met with my host and homeowner in Oahu before she left on her own flight the next morning.  She couldn’t be a more kind and generous host and I count myself lucky to be caring for her home and welcomed by her. She even left a few goodies for me to use including a great beach towel and snorkeling equipment.

Since I have arrived I have mostly been “getting my island legs,” tending to the basics and exploring some of the immediate area and territory. Even with all of my traveling experience, I still get nervous when landing in new territory. So I find I am well-served by taking my time and easing into new places.

I had the pleasure of connecting with a few folks at Unity Church of Hawaii and helped just a bit with their campus cleanup. Outdoors and masked up, it was great for even just a bit to see some new friendly faces and meet some locals. I am also fortunate to connect with the Oahu Art of Living Zoom group!  I have participated with Art of Living’s spiritual practices since I took their first course (now known as Sky Breath Meditation) back in 2007. There are regular meetups around the world for graduates and even though we can’t yet meet in person, being with the local group even on Zoom is a treat.

And just this morning… I made my first venture to the beach!  Where to go?  There are so many to choose from! As this is my first time in Hawaii, prior to my plans to come I didn’t realize that Oahu is quite small!  You can get to nearly anywhere on the island in 30 – 45 minutes! So that means, from where I am just a bit west of Honolulu, I have easy access to the whole island!

For my first beach visit I chose Kailua State Beach. Just a 30 minute drive from my current location, plus a lifeguard on duty and… it’s open! (a few locations are closed at this time), it seemed like the perfect place to start.  The drive there wound me through lush green mountains and when I arrived I felt like I landed in paradise. I mean no kidding. I have been to many places but I have never been or seen anyplace quite so lovely and naturally beautiful – from the sweet inlet of water and surrounding mountains and community to the breathtakingly blue water that enticed me like a dream.

The beach had a healthy speckling of beachgoers, enough to feel safe with others around but not so many that it felt crowded at all. There was plenty of room for and respect of social distancing in the backdrop of enchanted mountains, soft sand and welcoming waves.  I took a great walk on the beach, loaded up the sunscreen and just took it in… the unbelievableness, the unexpected oh-my of my current surroundings!

I am back at home now, always happy to be out for a little adventure but equally happy to return to that feeling of home. I feel super safe in the lovely town home community where I am housesitting surrounded with an easy feel and lush greens and palm trees.  As the coming weeks unfold, I imagine I will navigate that balance between the need and desire for downtime, rest and relaxation and the joy of exploration.

So long for now from the island of Oahu – a new little leap in life and my housesitting journey.  My best in health and happiness to all of you!

Limbocation

8 Oct

Here I am hanging out in Central Texas. I wouldn’t exactly call it a vacation. But it is at least a little sweet and serene just the same. My recent house and pet sit just completed in Austin. So often on this crooked journey at the very last minute, something workable or even remarkable comes in at the nick of time to save the day. But not this time. Not so far.

After hunkering down with family for a few months, I took the leap to head on down to Texas for a house sit. In truth, I wasn’t sure what to expect in current circumstances. Wasn’t sure how long it would last and if I would find myself heading back up to the midwest with family. So I did my best to go with the flow. And flow I did… for a little bit. A great sit in Wimberley, TX. Then a long term sit in Hill Country which – due to unforeseen circumstances – was cancelled. A little shift left. A little jolt right and… I moseyed on over to rural Texas outside Austin for a bit and then a last minute miraculous sashay back to Austin. And then…. [insert cricket noise]

So here I am… on Limbocation. Still exploring options. So far my experience is similar to that of other full time travelers. The landscape has changed. Fewer people traveling. On house sitting platforms, more house sitters vying for a handful of sits.

With that said I am open… to seeing what unfolds. A new housesit? A light caretaking job? A wonderful workable work exchange? Or perhaps something else… something unexpected… If you know of any options or opportunities, at present I am available and would love to hear about them.

With that said I am open… to seeing what unfolds. A new housesit? A light caretaking job? A wonderful workable work exchange? Or perhaps something else… something unexpected

And in the meantime I am slowly making my way back up towards the Midwest doing my best to surf the rough terrain and smell the roses along the way despite the unmistakable discomfort of it all.

How is the terrain in your corner of the world? It’s always great to hear from you!

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