My Favorite Things About Savannah, GA

  1. My mom lives there

    We just passed Mother’s Day, so this has to be a big one! If Savannah didn’t already have enough to offer, this makes it an easy choice for a favorite city. I missed posting on the actual Mom’s day (has it really been almost a month since the last post? Yikes, sorry about that!), but I spent Easter Weekend in Georgia with my mom... and at the community clubhouse eating all the shrimp cocktail at the brunch buffet.

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2. It’s green everywhere

Savannah is known for its lush garden squares and Spanish moss hanging from all the trees. It’s Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil brought to life; a little spooky and mysterious at night, but perfectly enchanting during the day. I haven’t taken a ghost tour yet, but it’s sure to be on the list someday.

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3. Food in all forms

Since my mom and stepdad started living down here, over ten years ago, the food scene seems to have evolved a bit. Of course, we can and do still find our favorites—southern fried chicken and mashed potatoes at the Pink House, classic sandwiches from Zunzi’s (though I miss the old food truck), or mini chocolate chip cookies from Byrd. This time, we added some new kids on the block. Grilled cheese with curried tomato soup served in a Warhol-esque Campbell’s can at Atlantic—they were playing Dark Side of the Moon to accompany Wizard of Oz on a projector screen. Very hip; very youthful! Aussie fare from Collin’s Quarters that took me back to two months earlier at Bondi Beach. And one of the tastiest vegan restaurants I’ve tried yet. In the middle of Georgia! Can you believe it?! I guess it’s not that surprising when you consider the fact that Savannah’s also home to SCAD (Savannah College of Art & Design), one of the country’s best art schools, which brings me to #4…

4. The arts

It turns out, Savannah is not only a city for brunching, drinking, visiting my mom, and walking around fancy squares, though you could occupy quite a bit of your time with all of that. It also has a very fulfilling cultural scene and a continuous supply of youthful energy from incoming college students. Every year, there’s the huge Savannah Music Festival and the Savannah Book Festival featuring well-known artists and authors from all around. In day-to-day life, there is an impressive amount of museums, galleries, and artsy shops to keep you inspired and your creative well full.

5. Nature

Believe it or not, some of my wildest natural sightings have occurred while visiting my mom in Savannah. There’s usually an alligator or two sunning themselves along the banks of the ponds or the edges of golf courses. And there are often cute little turtles basking on the rocks nearby. I’ve seen a few owls up in the trees while out on my trail runs. One time, I even saw the biggest snake of my life sneaking around the outside of the house! My mom lives a bit outside of downtown, so I never know what to expect.

Can’t wait for the next visit back down here.

Bulldogs & Beach Daze

Last weekend, we celebrated a friend’s birthday at a new favorite beach of mine, Point Dume. There were rocky cliffs, turquoise waters, sea lions, and the types of things you might think of when you think of Malibu. Actually, I didn’t see the sea lions or think there were sea lions in Malibu, but I heard and believe they were just around the bend.

Point Dume Malibu, CA

The only small bit of trouble was that we brought one of these girls without knowing about the steep stairs and rocky descent down to the water:

via  Instagram

Fortunately, Cricket loves the beach, so she trooped on out to the ocean and the whole group of us had a very nice day.

I’m still dreaming of a dog of my own, and I hope you’re still heading outside to seek out sights near you!

3 Tips for Solo Camping (as a Lady)

As you know, I’ve now been on a solo camping trip to here, and I’ve returned to share some wisdom of the wilderness. These are not very gender-specific rules, and they might even be helpful for everyone, but I did take being a lady into account when sleeping in the woods alone. And I bet I am not the best person to give this advice since I’ve only done it one time, but I’m obviously very excited about it and have been talking it up a lot, so here’s what I’ve learned:

June Lake Campground
  1. Plan ahead

    It was important to me to pick out my campground ahead of time. Even though my site didn’t end up having the best view, I was glad to be close enough to other campers to feel safe without being overcrowded. Solitude can be sweet, but for my own security, I preferred not to be too isolated. I planned to arrive with plenty of daylight to establish camp and scope out the area before dark. Years ago, I also practiced setting up my tent ahead of time just to get the hang of it.



  2. Do some activities (but not too many)

    I knew I wanted to squeeze some planned activities in—like June Lake Beach and the June Lake Brewing Company—but I also left plenty of time for lounging and breathing. I thought I might get bored in the dark and hit my sleeping bag at 8pm, but my fire kept me interested well into the night, and then I looked up and saw all the stars!

    Also, you should know how to build a fire on your own. It’s pretty easy in a dry climate. The internet has tips. Luckily, I once went on a camping trip in Austin with a mountain man and two bada** ladies who knew what they were doing, so I acted all “Oh yeah, I know about fires, too,” and observed their tricks while pretending to gather sticks and be helpful.



  3. Lie

    Unfortunately, in the life of a lady (or general person) on her own in the world, sometimes bending the truth is required. I made some friends at the brewery who offered an invitation to come out in Mammoth Village with them later that night. They seemed fun and friendly, but I fibbed and told them I had other plans and hadn’t decided where I’d be staying that night. I might have missed out on some good times, but I had a separate date planned with Nature. I think if someone is going to turn into a real friend, they would understand why you couldn’t be completely honest.



Red Rock Canyon

That might be all I learned this trip, besides not to eat too many Hot Cheetos on the drive up. If you can get past the initial scariness, camping on your own can be a wildly empowering experience and a great way to enjoy spending time with yourself.

June Lake

Hi sweet friends!

Last week, I made a spontaneous pilgrimage to NorCal to visit June Lake, one of the places where I skied with my dad this spring. It's crazy how time slips by--I can't believe I've been out here for almost six months already! After seeing June Mountain in the winter, I knew I needed to check out the area in the warmth of summertime. 

June Mountain

Even with the five hour drive up there, the day was full and peaceful. I found a musical road in Lancaster, CA on the way, then spent the afternoon hiking around the campground and lounging at the beach. August had made the grounds hot and dry, but the waters of the lake were perfectly cool and refreshing. And I don't think any trip to June would be complete without a stop at the local brewery

June Lake

I drove around the June Lake Loop whilst eating too many hot Cheetos and scoping out some other more scenic campgrounds. I was pretty happy with the one I chose, but could've used more access to the water (like at nearby Silver Lake in the photo below). Anyway, mine was safe, bear-free, and with bathrooms so I really can't complain.

June Lake Loop

The next day including a brief visit through Yosemite, and I think that deserves a post of its own. I hope you're still out seeking summer adventures wherever in the world you are!

In the Trees

Hi friends! There's a new moon on the horizon, and this week is delivering the excitement of renewed energy and possibilities. How could it not, when it started out like this? (For me, at least!)

Joshua Tree camping

The weekend took me back to Joshua Tree National Park where I camped with a new friend and got to see one of my favorite bands in funky little Pioneertown

Yo La Tengo at Pappy & Harriet's

Yo La Tengo at Pappy & Harriet's

I have a picture of Georgia, the drummer, on my 2018 vision board and, while I will say that my intention was to play the drums like her, I will accept the universe's offering of getting to see her play the drums in person.

I can tell you that Pappy & Harriet's is a magical venue that is well-worth checking out, and if you happen to be doing so, why not stay at the Black Rock Canyon Campground in Joshua Tree?  It just might be the thing for you.

Hi View Nature Trail Joshua Tree

Take a Hike

Did you know I didn't like it here in LA the first time I came? I didn't like it even one bit. That first visit was about 5 years ago, my sister and I were driving around at the end of our full California road trip, and we had no idea where to go. We took the metro to Hollywood with a lot of smelly people. We found Hollywood to be disappointing (or at least I did, but my sister might have been satisfied with seeing the sign and Ellen DeGeneres' star). We spent a day and a half here and the flight home couldn't come soon enough, although we did stay in an adorable Airbnb which provided our safe haven.

Echo Mountain Hike

I certainly didn't think that one day I would wind up living here. Things in the city have changed since our Airbnb hostess told us to only turn left at the end of our street, never right, if we wanted to preserve our safety. I found out that it's full of interesting things to see and do, beyond the star walk and Santa Monica Pier. And there are still plenty of unsettling strangers to yell at you on the sidewalk.

The biggest surprise for me about LA has been the availability of nature and outdoor explorations. I didn't know it during my first visit, or my second or third, but there are a great many hikes to be had around here. While it appears so concrete and traffic ridden to an outsider, the mountains and parks are very accessible once you live here.

Los Liones hike

I've been squeezing in as many hikes as possible during my free hours. It's hard to get myself on the stairclimber at the gym when I know there are such beautiful hills nearby. I'm envisioning myself becoming part of the group of early rising elitists that does a morning hike before the start of the workday, or (more preferably) one that at least breaks up the commute with a climb on the way home.

And for you, wherever you are, I hope it's not snowing and that you are remembering to go outside. <3

Echo Mountain Hike

New Mexico True

After the 12-14 hour first day road trip, I woke up in Red River, NM. It was a ski day where the sun was shining and the tickets were half priced for me, since I was there to visit my friend who is working as a ski instructor. I was thrilled to have ski friends because I hadn't had any of those since at least early college. I was on my own on that first morning while everyone else clocked in for work. The chairlift was slow and quiet. The trails were uncrowded and groomed. My headphones were back at the apartment, so it was just me and my thoughts.

Skiing in Red River, NM

I got a satisfied feeling like when you gaze around and life looks the way you used to dream of it looking. Here I was skiing at an almost-empty mountain on a warm day, my friend is working at the resort and she knows all of the ski crew and bartenders in town. 16 year old Cori would be proud.

Detours

It probably comes as a surprise that I went from Guatemala to California to New England to Texas. California and New England are not exactly "on the way" from Guatemala to Texas, but they're also not "not on the way". Anywhere can be on the way to anywhere else, it just depends on the way you're going.

Joshua Tree National Park

There's never a bad time of year to visit Southern California (besides when it's on fire or falling in on itself), and it's an unbelievable treat to find yourself camping on a mild night in early January (especially when it's free for Martin Luther King Day). I got to put my indoor bouldering (lack of) skills to the test outdoors when I turned my dreams of Joshua trees into reality. 

Joshua Tree National Park
Joshua Tree National Park

You don't even need to leave the country to find wild wonders, but, if the temperature rises above double digits, you should probably go outside.

Ring of Fire

Most of the time, the overlook points at Mombacho Volcano provide some of the best views of the city of Granada from high above. On the day I went, everything looked like this:

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One of the many perks of working for the hotel is that when guests go on excursions, I can join and pay less than it would normally cost since I become part of a bigger group. Sadly, this meant going to the prettiest one on the rainiest day, but all the lush greenery in the cloud forest was still a sight to see.

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On another day, we visited the more active Masaya Volcano, where you can drive up to the top at night and check out the red lava bubbling inside the crater. I've never seen glowing lava before, so that was a unique experience. Plus, there were a lot of bats flying around inside the museum and outside around the volcano, and you know we like those

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A Silent Stay

While in Bali, I had the chance to fulfill an interest that has been sparking my curiosity for a long time by spending a night at a silent retreat. While I don't think I stayed quite long enough to fully experience the plentiful benefits of time spent in silence, the retreat center provided a brief glimpse of all that can be gained from being alone with yourself in such a peaceful place.

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Before my arrival, I was nervous. I had received recommendations, but I didn't think I would have enough time to go since I was (very sadly) only in Bali for four days and the retreat center is about an hour and a half outside of Ubud. Then it just so happened that I ended up with a free night and didn't have anywhere else scheduled to stay so I checked for openings and, after finding a few, made a reservation.

I wasn't sure when the silence would start. Would the van driver talk to me after picking me up? Would reception just hand me a bag and a list of instructions? How would I make travel arrangements to come back to the next day? All my concerns abated when I arrived to find the most cheerful and talkative Balinese woman waiting to check me in and show me around. The reception hut was an open talking zone, and she still toured me around the grounds in whispers after we had passed the white flags that started the zone of silence on the property.

My first surprise was at how much there was to do. There were five hours of guided yoga and meditation classes offered each day-- 2.5 in the morning and another 2.5 at night. Around the retreat center there were also many opportunities for more solitary mediation which could take place under a waterfall, in a labyrinth walking maze, or on a jungle trek through the woods. There was full library in the lounge and three mealtimes provided tasty, vegetarian, and organic buffets. There were lectures on green living, and frequent field trips where you could talk to the other guests. It was a light and delicious introduction to the more serious vipassana or ashram experience.

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The second surprise was that dinner was set out between 4:30 and 6pm, right after the afternoon round of yoga and meditation. On the first day, I had to do some extra fast-paced jungle trekking to be ready for a meal at that time, but it helped to get into the habit of eating less and resisting the urge to try everything on the table... for the most part. It was a little uncomfortable to be around the other visitors without greeting anyone, but most people shared smiles and held doors for each other. Some even broke the rules a bit to mouth a "thank you".

The final surprise helped make sense of why dinner was so early. Since the retreat center runs efficiently on solar power, the lights in the main buildings turn off around 7, and most of my dorm mates were turning off their bed lamps to go to sleep at 8. It's a wonder how quickly our bodies adapt to the rhythm of nature when we don't have electronics to disrupt or entertain. I lay awake that night for a while listening to all the sounds outside, but eventually fell asleep feeling blessed to be in such a beautiful place.

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Elephant Endeavors

If you've ever heard of Thailand and, more specifically, Chiang Mai, you've probably been made aware that one of the main tourist attractions is the opportunity to come into contact with some of Earth's most precious and holy creatures-- elephants. Among the people I talked to before venturing here, it was a highly controversial topic. Some said definitely go see the elephants because it was the best experience of life. Others said definitely do not go anywhere with elephants because they are all tortured and treated inhumanely.

All objections aside, like most tepid-hearted Americans coming to Asia for the first time, I pretty much knew that if I could find a semi-decent place where they didn't slash or prod the animals, I was going to see some elephants on this trip. I followed my friend Warren's recommendation, read as many elephant treatment reviews as I could, and set off for a day of close contact with trunk-wielding tree trimmers. I chose Into the Wild Elephant Camp, instead of the more popular and well-regarded Elephant Nature Park because I hoped for a more intimate, less crowded visit.

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And it really was an unbelievable experience, and even more so because there were only 3 of us visiting 5 elephants that day. We hiked with them, bathed with them, and sort of ate lunch with them while they smartly tried to steal food from our table. I'd never touched one before, so spending hours next to them as they gracefully lumbered through the woods and covering them with mud to provide necessary sun protection offered a ton of new soul-satisfying observations.

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I hope the elephants are always treated as well as I saw during the visit. Our guides seemed to genuinely care about them, and there were no bullhooks or riding baskets in sight. The elephants seemed to genuinely not care about anything other than eating, an act that they engaged in for almost all of the 5 hours we were with them. Apparently indifferent to our presence, they did, at points, threaten to chop our heads off with their superior lumberjack skills. I could certainly see why Thai Buddhists worship the elephant god, Ganesha, as the remover of obstacles. 

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Surrendering to Life: Pai Edition

I set off on this journey with the intention of leaving many details unplanned. I expected to meet people in the second week of my travels, during the yoga portion, and wanted to leave room for spontaneous adventure. However, as the flight to Thailand crept closer, my anxious planning instincts started to take the reigns. Just to be safe, I set up a hostel for a few nights after the retreat, and scheduled another one in Pai (a nature-heavy, hippie town that had been highly recommended) for later in the week. My desires for impromptu backpacking gave way to my usual urge to control what comes next.

On Sunday, the last day of the retreat, our group was scheduled to practice together in the morning, and then be dropped off back in the city around noon. I was ready for some chill solo time, and my clothes were begging to be laundered. But I soon found out that the universe was chuckling at all my advanced planning and thinking that I knew what was good for me. My new Aussie friend, Amanda, also wanted to visit Pai, but her flight was leaving on Tuesday. Could we go that day? I was reluctant. My chill time! My laundry! We wouldn't get there until 7pm and would leave to come back not 24 hours later. 

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Before I knew it, we were ditching our bags (at the pre-booked hostel) and riding a red truck to the bus station. The stars must have aligned since we were permitted onto the 3 o'clock bus, despite having shown up at the booking desk at 2:58. In accordance with online and word of mouth warnings, the road to Pai was rough and winding, but we made it unscathed. We sat down at a cafe to book a hostel for the night, and were amused to find out later that our room was actually a $4 sectional family tent on what looked like a riverside thatched hut commune. PaiZen River Jam Hostel was the place for us. 

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We spent the night out making traveler friends, trying to spend as long as we could in the warmth of bars and fellow nomads. But sleeping outside felt good to us (mats and fleece blankets helped), and the river provided a zen spot to further our morning meditation habits. The next day, we conquered my fears of driving a scooter. We saw canyons and waterfalls and ate at the most amazing restaurant I've ever eaten at in my life. If you are ever in Pai, please eat most, if not all, of your meals at Earth Tone so I can relive it through you!

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As predicted, we didn't want to leave after only a day, but the last bus was heading out at 5pm, and our scooter skills weren't quite up to the 3-4 hour ride back under the light of the moon. Although it was short, this trip presented me with some of the joys of last-minute planning. If I'd gone to Pai on my own, I would've had more time there and probably a slower-paced visit, but I wouldn't have had the courage to rent a motorbike or the confidence to cruise through the countryside with a friend! I might have seen the river running through the town, but my scheduled hostel was no more than a bed in a dorm on the main shopping street. I would have missed the canyons, waterfalls, and most of the natural beauty that Pai has to offer.

Once again, I'm reminded that the most exciting plans often come from letting go and seeing where the circumstances take you. So thank you to Amanda for helping me surrender to life and taking this trip with me. I wouldn't have had it any other way!

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Pace Yourself

It's starting to stay darker and cooler a little longer in the mornings, but that Texas-like ability to creep into the 90's by mid-day is still going strong enough to make you think twice about lighting cinnamon candles or ordering your various seasonal lattes. We'll be happily basking in the heat of summer until at least October around here.

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In August, I was able to spend a lovely day here, and I kicked myself for letting over 4 years pass in Austin before finding the time to visit. Pace Bend Park has miles and miles of trails, exhilarating cliffs for jumping off into the water, countless campsites for overnight adventurers, and some swell trees for swinging your hammock. The shallow part of Lake Travis was feeling pretty bath-like that day, but it was all just fine.

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If you're an Austin person looking for some sweaty hikes or your last swims of summer, or even a shoreline campground, I think it would really be worth your while. 

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Intentions: Eclipse Edition

From a pretty young age, I realized that it didn't make much sense to ask for specific, little wishes from the universe, whether it was convincing middle school boys to like me or passing my driver's test on the first try. There were bigger things at play here. I've always had more than enough in my daily life, and I know now that sometimes what we want is far from what we need, so my requests have (not always selflessly) steered towards greater experiences, lasting talents, and a more global perspective.

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I tried to keep to that theme when coming up with some eclipse intentions. It's always difficult to wrangle all my interests into a short list of three, but I realize the importance of harnessing this powerful shift and channeling energy toward what we find most important, even if it only happens in our heads. Here's a list of what I'll be focusing on this time around:

1. To live even more in the way. In other words, to go with the flow and to avoid letting big shifts throw me off my game. I'm learning to see the teacher in all experiences, even when they look like setbacks at first. I hope to continue this practice since we all know the big changes won't be stopping anytime soon.

2. To feel at home in myself. This one's usually tough! To be accepting of myself and my journey, without wanting it to look a different way or move along faster than it needs to. To feel comfortable with all my sameness and uniqueness that keeps me moving within my community, without comparing and competing along the way. 

3. To cultivate discipline. As an Aries and an Enneagram 7, I am a really great starter and not much of a follow through and finisher. I'm enthusiastic about a broad number of activities, and deep about very few. Most habits that begin with full force excitement get forgotten or left behind in a week or two. I've realized that most of my internal growth has happened when I'm able to stay in one place and put my heart into something or at least sit myself still for time enough to think and reflect, even when my wandering feet get bored.

 

So that's my list. I'd love to hear yours. Also, remember that on any old day it's alright to drop everything, get outside, and wonder at the sky! It seems like there's so little that we really understand about how this world is working.

Gone Outside

One day in July I sat here and meditated with the Oprah & Deepak 21-day meditation app and it was very nice, very hot, and very spiritual millennial of me. I am hearing a lot of people talk about summer coming to an end, and I hope that they will stop because there is a lot more ahead of us! 

Are you taking time to find some peaceful outside places near you?

Lands of Enchantment

If you're a person who thinks ticket prices make it too costly to travel, try buying this $60 tent, packing up your car, and driving over to the next state. You just might find yourself in another world.

Sometimes you can camp for $10. Sometimes you can camp for free. Sometimes it will be too windy to camp and you'll get to sleep in your car, which could have been free, if you hadn't already reserved a campsite.

However you choose to sleep in the great outdoors, get out there! There's a lot to see. 

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The Good & the Green

Just when I think I have swum in all of the majestic swimming holes around here, I find myself stumbling upon another majestic swimming hole. 

People are coming to Austin for the brunch and the jobs, and they are staying for the good and the green things that are very nearby. McKinney Falls State Park is one of those good, green things, which also happens to not be very crowded on an overcast spring day. You had better get here before summer when all the water might go away, but for now I'm giving it all the thumbs up.

Hidden Gems

In my yoga classes this week, I offered up the intention of looking at various aspects of our lives through the lens of a “Beginner’s Mind”.  This Zen Buddhist concept means shifting our attitude about familiar things: poses, hobbies, work, studies, relationships, etc. to view them from a new angle, by imagining that we are taking part in them for the very first time. The practice opens up space for different possibilities and perspectives as our habits and preconceptions are broken down. 

This got me thinking about applying a beginner’s mind to the places in which we live. When I first moved to Austin, my newcomer’s senses wanted to see and do everything. And taste everything, too, since I gained about 10 pounds upon moving here. I was a constant consumer of novelty. No adventure was too time-intensive, no distance too far. Heck, I’d sometimes even drive to San Antonio if the day felt right.

Now, as much as I love Austin, my endless explorations have settled into a routine list of favorite activities, restaurants, bars, and spots to spend my time. I guard my non-working hours closely, and if I’m going to drive south of the river or get on Mopac at all ever, there better be a darn good reason. I see the hot new places and excited out-of-towners moving in every day, but I feel happier (and lazier) to exist inside my usual bubble. My 2016 To-Try list doesn’t have nearly as many items crossed off as I was planning by this time in the year.

So I was excited last week when my friend Karina invited me to visit the River Place Nature Trail, a hike that was on my list, but off the beaten-path of nearby Austin trails. The 5-6 mile hike* overlooking the West Austin hills and eventually running alongside a river, helped me feel the same zest I felt when I first moved here, like there was something magical hiding under every rock I turned. 

While we accept more comfort in our cities, we give up some of the novelty and the zest for exploring. We settle into routines and responsibilities, and back out of more events if they’re further from our zone of normalcy. Our bodies and minds know this and start to become numb. We get tired more easily and aren’t as ignited by the idea of seeing something new or making a connection with a stranger. When we become experts on a subject, another person, or a city, the only way to counteract closed-mindedness or stagnation is to observe what we know from another side.

 

For the rest of this year, and hopefully thereafter, I’m trying to embrace the shiny, new or yet unseen parts of this city where I’ve lived for almost 4 years. I promise to say “yes” more times to something that sounds fun, before looking at Google Maps’ distance from my current location.  And to my fellow Austin dwellers, I promise that whatever I find, I’ll be sure to share with you.

*The trail is out and back, so you can make it as short or as long as you’d like.

How-to: Labor Day, Austin style

1. Find a lake house

Lake Travis in Austin, Texas

Long, end of summer weekends beg for water. Rent a lake house, make a lake-residing friend, start a relationship with someone who lives on a lake, take over an abandoned dock, etc. Do whatever it takes! It's an investment in your future and you (probably) won't regret it. 

2. Let there be music

Concrete Robot @ Hole in the Wall

Concrete Robot @ Hole in the Wall

Few things could be called "Austin style" without live music. I followed in the footsteps of Spoon/St. Vincent/Doug Sahm/Natalie Portman/a bunch of other famous people when I was treated to my first show at Hole in the Wall on Saturday night. Then, on Sunday after the lake, our smelly, lakey selves wound up at a house show to hear our friend, Jimmy Dee's, angelic vocals. It was all super cool and musical and Austin-y. Plus, there were Oreos. Yay!

3. End it with a free day of yoga

Free Day of Yoga Austin, Texas

I am only half sure that it falls on the same day each year, but this Labor Day happened to coincide with Austin's Free Day of Yoga which brings us tons of different style yoga and meditation classes all over the city. I was happy to help out with my friend David's yoga and meditation in the morning and to enjoy another yoga class in the afternoon. What better way to wrap up your non-laboring weekend than with your choice of stretching, kirtan chants, gong meditations, and/or reiki energy circles?

Cori Dombroski yoga teacher

Bittersweet September

Like a great many good things in this cruel and mysterious world, my summer of complete and total freedom must now come to an end. The past week back at home has shown me that, as eye-opening and horizon-expanding as jumping around can be, life can sometimes be just as rewarding when you stay in one place, especially if that place happens to be Austin, Texas.

Hamilton Pool Preserve
Hamilton Pool in Austin, Texas
Bobal @ Empire Control Room

Bobal @ Empire Control Room

It's also taught me that real barbecue is worth waiting for and that unemployment is not without its drawbacks, since it is possible to max out your ClassPass 3 class allowance at 5 different studios. Time to get back to the working world.

I am taking a long, glorious moment of disbelief tonight to let my heart expand with gratitude for these past two or three irreplaceable months. Thank you, thank you, thank you!

Grassy shoes at Deep Eddy Pool

Grassy shoes at Deep Eddy Pool