peaks and valleys

Over one year ago, I began writing this blog as way to stay in touch with my family and friends during my stay in Brasil. Looking back on this past year, it has been amazing yet frightening, a melangé of love ups and let downs, supreme highs and sporadic lows yet still i rise and cannot help but be optimistic about the coming season: Summer. It’s my favorite time of year because my main squeeze is in full effect; I’m talking about the sun, of course.

In my opinion, Springtime is a total mindfuck (excuse me). One day it’s gorgeous and sunny then the next day is grey and damp, and so on. Nature has a way of imparting life’s biggest lesson: there would be no peaks without valleys, no flowers without clouds and rain. We would not be able to gloat on the mountain top if we hadn’t emerged from the valley below.

Today I am giving thanks for peaks and valleys. My weekend being a murky mixture of both.

Saturday, I took a very long bike ride then found myself in Red Hook on Van Brunt Street at the suggestion of a friend. A tiny enclave of fine dining restaurants, wine shops, an ice cream parlor, and Baked, a bustling cafe/bakery that’s been open since 2005 served as an ideal resting spot. I spent most of my afternoon there, chatting, writing, and sipping on fresh mint ice tea with the sun on my face. Upon my arrival, my energy was scattered; however, by the time I hopped on the bike again, I felt collected and whole again.

There is also a large garden center hosted by Chelsea Garden Center farther down the block. It seems as if I am beginning to fancy gardening. Hmmm…

Again, activities with friends were the highlight of my weekend. A Saturday night invite for wine and tea ensued conversations around film, travel, unconditional love and the conditions of life.

Sunday’s original plans crumbled in the rain; although I managed to share a delicious almond and chocolate pastry with a friend while sipping on ginger tea at Nunu. Just as we parted ways, I received an unexpected and much appreciated text invite to attend a live performance by Ceu, a young Brasileira songstress, at the Highline Ballroom in Manhattan. I had a beautiful evening and the timing of the invite was perfect for so many reasons.

See my heart is on the mend. My spirit is putting itself back together again. These last few posts have centered around my feeling low yet looking on the bright side and giving thanks. This blog has become a digital diary of sorts and although the purpose of it is to share my incredible travel experiences, it is also a documentation of my personal life and many interests. (check out the pages on the right)

Life and relationships ebb and flow or flutter then flounder. My perspective is such: it is better to have loved and have been loved then to never have loved at all. This post is dedicated to love coming full circle. Last night’s concert was a satisfying end to the love I experienced while in Brasil and beyond. Flying high, sailing free, and basking in the pure light of truth. It’s all coming back to me now.

A beautiful Argentinean woman named Mia Maestro along with Aaron Robinson opened for Ceu last night and she too brought smiles and warmth to a rather damp evening. I am ever so grateful for the expression of words and song.

Thanks for reading and please eat something RED today for the heart space.

Try strawberries, rasperries, or add fresh red pepper or cherry tomatoes to your salad.

My dinner of spinach pasta, olive oil & garlic, arugula and roasted peppers

Hugs and smiles,

*Lala*

sunny tulum mexico

seeing that it’s a whopping 16 degrees Farenheit in new york city, i find it necessary to conjure up memories from my recent stay in Tulum, Mexico. oh, how i’d give anything to be back in this magical Mayan/Mexican town where the sun shines bright and the fine white sand serves as a refuge for any lost soul.

Aahh! the beach. Tulum, Mexico

my first encounter of Tulum was last year over the Memorial Day weekend. i was hired to shoot a wedding on the beach for a beautiful couple who were referred to as Damvina (a cute combination of the couple’s first names)…check out their photos in Quicktime by clicking on the links at the bottom of the page. what an amazing weekend!

Mayan Art

the wedding experience was remarkable and the natural beauty of the beach inspired me to make a return trip last week. it was time for a Vitamin D refill; and, since a good friend had made plans to go for a first-time visit, i decided to tag along.

on the beach of Puerta del cielo (Mayan-owned)

of course, there are stories and activities that i wish to share but, for today, i would rather write about one particular instance.

considering that we were staying in the town of Tulum, we rented bikes to ride the 8 km distance to the beach. one sunny day, shortly after breakfast, i headed to the beach alone with purple bag in basket and my bikini underneath summer dress. just as i was approaching the beachside, i felt myself smiling. i mean cheese-ing — even beaming — and it was totally involuntary. at that very moment i was the happiest woman in the world! LOVE was all around me. i felt PEACE. i was ECSTATIC to be alive. only the beauty of nature mattered and my spirit was singing its praises via an ear-to-ear smile.

Lala the Sunchaser (YAY!)

i am totally aware of what does it for me and that is: sunshine, bike riding, the feel of sand, the sounds of the ocean and/or good music, a full belly, LOVE, pen&paper, and the ability to capture beauty with my handy camera.

There are beautiful birds everywhere.

there was a moment where i began to call out the names of my many loved ones and friends saying the words THANK YOU before each name really loud! it’s my way of sending sunshine your way!

quote from Budda (Buddha:)

my wish for you in the coming year is that you find yourself smiling and moving to the magical rhythm of life. i hope that you experience moments of sheer bliss and total gratitude just as i had on the beaches of Tulum.

First sight of the beach while on the bike!

my goal this winter is to enjoy moments like this without realizing that it is FREEZING OUT…it’s all in the mind and anything is possible when you wrap your head around it!

Sunset in Tulum-BREATHE!

think about the fearless leaders who have faced adversity and much harsher weather conditions while marching towards a goal for the good of ALL kind. my personal hero is Harriet Tubman. and by the weather today, i can tell that i am going to need her guiding strength to make it through what i expect to be my last full winter in new york city … i am very close to finishing my first book project so i gotta tough it out.

the next post will outline, in more detail, the adventures of my stay in tulum, mexico … so stay tuned.

With LOVE and CARE!

with love*peace*happiness

happy holidays !