Anyone remember Juan Valdez, from the old Folger’s commercials? Well, wow, he’s STILL growing coffee! Check it out! (In Quito, Ecuador) Makes me giggle every time I see a Juan Valdez Cafe.
I sight-see, take photos and walk around in the morning and then return to my home here in the afternoon to attend business matters, hold coaching calls and check-in with my team.
Life is good!
What daily routine do you do that works well when you travel?
The river outside my home here in Ecuador is utterly mesmerizing.
It’s fast. It’s rough. It’s loud. It’s beautiful.
Walking alongside it is my favorite thing to do here.
I also love sitting by the big window in my home that overlooks the river to watch the variety of human experience happening on its banks.
Where is your personal favorite inspiring spot? I’d love to hear about it below.
I had to ask around to see if it was OK to photograph members of the Andean indigenous population in Cuenca, Ecuador. I LOVE their brightly colored traditional clothing so reminiscent of Peruvian style.
Sometimes indigenous communities have very strong feelings against being photographed, or they want something in return. Once, in my earlier, more inexperienced, years of travel, I asked an indigenous woman in Oaxaca, Mexico, if I could take her photo.
At the time, I was a newspaper journalist, and we had ethical problems with “paying” for a photo. So I refused to pay her and she screamed at me. I could tell she was “cursing” me…literally.
Sure enough, when I was back in Mexico City, I ended up leaving my camera in a taxi, never to see it—or the photo I took of her—again.
So back here in Cuenca, I made sure to ask and several cab drivers told me “No problema.” But I still felt the need to keep my camera as unobtrusive as possible. So I sat far away and cropped these two lovelies into full view at home.
Oh, and in case you’re wondering, the person in the foreground is a woman, though this shot makes her look quite manly. But you’d never catch a man in a skirt here!
Hard to believe it: I’m in Ecuador! My first time south of the equator.
I am so excited to finally be here that I’m pinching myself! This has been a dream since last year.
But I almost didn’t make it!
Just before my flight from Atlanta to Quito began to board, I was called up to the desk and told that because my passport was to expire in JUNE—yes, JUNE—they wouldn’t let me on the plane.
Turns out that Ecuador has a rule that you can’t enter the country if you have less than 6 months remaining on your passport. I’ve learned now that a number of other countries do this, too, but I’d never come across it before in all my years of travel.
BIG TIP: Always check your passport before traveling—and be sure you have at least 6 months left before it expires.
Anyway, long story short, I spent the night in Atlanta, lined up at the downtown Passport Office the next morning, and to my shock, it took less than 1.5 hours start to finish to get a new passport. Bless them!
So here I am! Woohoo!
Cuenca is a beautiful Spanish colonial city in the Andes, founded back in the 1500s. I’m still catching my breath—literally—because of the altitude: 8,300 feet! But also the beauty.
The home I’m staying in (a home-swap arrangement) is right across the street from one of 4 rivers that run through Cuenca, and I hear the rushing water all day. LOVE IT! Out my window, I see local indigenous women scrubbing and slapping clothes against rocks and rinsing them in the river. Nearby, people keep fit on what looks to be an outdoor par-course gym. This is going to be interesting, I can tell!
You know, a number of people wished me a “good vacation” as I left—but this isn’t a vacation at all. I brought several projects to work on here. This is just what I do…find interesting and inspiring places to work from. The adventure and newness opens me up and stimulates my creativity. Makes it more fun to do my work. Just last night, I wrote a POETIC sales piece!
That’s not to say that it isn’t a little scary to arrive somewhere completely unknown, on my own, and set up house here for a month. It is. But I think it’s important to do scary things. Giving in to fear is like giving up on life.
Where is your next stop on your business adventure? Do you have plans (or dreams) to work abroad?
In Italy last fall, I discovered an amazing castle to stay in on my way from Bologna to Torino. I had a teleclass to give on Tuesday and Thursday, and I was planning to do it from my friend’s apartment in Torino.
But the castle…OMG!
Sitting atop thermal waters. Peacocks strutting around the grounds. Misty, magical views going on forever. I didn’t want to leave!
But how would I hold my teleclasses when neither the Internet nor my phone got great service inside the 11th century walls of my room?
One of my favorite quotes. It’s by W.H. Murray, from his 1951 book “The Scottish Himalayan Expedition” but it’s widely misattributed to Goethe.
“Concerning all acts of initiative (and creation), there is one elementary truth, the ignorance of which kills countless ideas and splendid plans: that the moment one definitely commits oneself, then Providence moves too. All sorts of things occur to help one that would never otherwise have occurred. A whole stream of events issues from the decision, raising in one’s favour all manner of unforeseen incidents and meetings and material assistance, which no man could have dreamt would have come his way. I learned a deep respect for one of Goethe’s couplets: Whatever you can do or dream you can, begin it. Boldness has genius, power and magic in it!”
Sloppy wet dog kisses and a portable business. Quite the diverse blog, eh?! As always, it’s fun writing it for you…enjoy!
So the big news: I’m home! After 2.5 months “on the road” in Italy, Paris, Texas and South Carolina, I’m back in my own diggs, and look at the happy reception I got! (Boy, I had to wash my mouth after that hello!)
I love traveling more than anything but I do miss my sweet Tuki. Luckily I have a fantastic gal who watches my sweet pet while I am away so that I feel she is taken care of – and in return I can take care of myself, explore the world and grow my business from the road.
One of the most frequently asked questions I get is about what do you do with your pet(s) when you’re away? Find someone who cares about your pet and is available to them (a housesitter, pet sitter, Nanna, Aunt, Sister, Friend – someone you trust) so you can truly enjoy where you are at in the moment. One of my favorite moments in any trip is opening the door to my house upon my return and having my dog greet me. Oh happy day!
What have you done with your pets while you’re on the road?
When I was in Italy a couple of weeks ago, I got up close
and personal with a huge herd of sheep as I shot this
short, adorable (the sheep, not me!) video for you.