A New Country Every Night!

The pandemic has stopped all of my travel plans, so I have been forced to armchair travel.  It may sound boring, but it gives me a taste of which countries I want to travel to in the future.

So far I have visited the Congo, Afghanistan, Zanskar, Tajikistan, India, Iran, Benin and Bhutan. Through YouTube documentaries I have cooked in remote villages in India with colorful spices and have driven through dangerous steep mountain roads in the the Hindu Kush.

Armchair travel has been fun, and I’m learning a lot about new places as I add them to my bucket list of places to travel.

The pandemic has lasted much longer than expected, and appears to not be going away, so for me, its about how can I continue to do the things that I love in a safe way that inspire and motivates me to get through the hard times.

Wherever you are, even if it is sitting on your own couch, you can still travel if your passion is to experience other cultures, other countries, or worlds other than your own.  Travel is a way of enriching your life, your knowledge, and your understanding of what life is like elsewhere.

Below is a link to one of my books about my own travel experiences.  Travel has always renewed my spirit and provided me with a sense of adventure. In Nomadic Tales of a Traveling Counselor, I explore my own fears through solo and group experience to some of the most beautiful remote places on earth.

https://www.tomorrowriverpublishing.com/product/nomadic-tales-of-a-traveling-counselor/

https://www.amazon.com/Nomadic-Traveling-Counselor-Karolee-Krause/dp/1691838829/ref=sr_1_1?dchild=1&keywords=nomadic+tales+of+a+traveling+counselor&qid=1594306536&sr=8-1

To Travel or Not to Travel?

With all the travel hype going on at the moment and facing another domestic trip out west, I can’t help but think, should I, or shouldn’t I travel.  With an upcoming trip to the Grand Canyon, open space, fresh air and a minimal amount of people, I wonder if it’s safe to go or not to go.  My body craves the exercise it needs through hiking, and my soul seeks the adventure that springtime brings after being locked up in a small house all winter.

So the decision remains, do I travel or not travel with all the media hype about the corona virus.  At this time domestic travel is still considered safe and millions of people are flying at this very moment.  Is it safe to fly?  Who knows, but I do know that life has no guarantees either way.  You can stay in your own small town and be the victim of crime or catch an illness, or you can catch it abroad.

How do you know what to do?  Being safe and responsible is the main thing.  I recently went to a local health spa where I ended up catching the flu and was sick for three weeks.  Life is ironic.  What I do know is that life calls us at different times in our lives to make difficult decisions, some more difficult than others.

Every spring I take a hiking trip somewhere remote and beautiful.  I feel alive again after the long hard Midwest winter and it marks the shifting of stagnation in both body and mind.

The recent news hype and fears about the corna virus reminded me of several trips that I took in the past in which I overcame fears and challenges in some of the most beautiful places on earth.

Nomadic Tales of a Traveling Counselor shares many of my experiences in Costa Rica, Havasu Falls, Tolantongo Mexico, the Grand Canyon, including several other incredible places around the globe.

For me, life is about travel and adventure and sharing it with others is what it is all about.  We get out of our daily routines, our ruts, and our negative life patterns.  We breathe new air, smell new aromas, and connect to the land and people in healing ways.

To go or not to go?  Life waits for no one.

https://www.amazon.com/Nomadic-Traveling-Counselor-Karolee-Krause/dp/1691838829/ref=sr_1_1?crid=22EEUR3ZOXL6D&keywords=nomadic+tales+of+a+traveling+counselor&qid=1583765473&sprefix=nomadic+tales%2Caps%2C330&sr=8-1

https://www.tomorrowriverpublishing.com/product/nomadic-tales-of-a-traveling-counselor/

Cloud Forest Zip Lining

A few years ago, I went to Costa Rica and had many first time adventures including white water rafting, swimming in hot springs, and zip lining above the rainforest canopy.

I was staying at a local organic echo farm, Finca Luna Nueva Lodge, and enjoyed the scenic rainy drive to Monteverde Cloud Forest, which has the longest zip line in Costa Rica.

Excited to zip line over the rainforest canopy, we took cable cars up the steep volcanic terrain, going higher and higher into the forest.  We were informed that at a certain point, that if we changed our mind, it would be too late, and that the only way down was to zip line.

Before we reached the top, we were given a mini experience of what starting and stopping entailed.  Stopping was abrupt due to the speed of travel.  I then reached the point of no return, and was secured into my harness and prepared to launch.

My adrenaline raced as I jumped off the platform and began my long journey back down the rainforest.

The first thing I remember was how painful the rain was as it hit my face like shards of glass.  I could barely open my eyes as I sped from one zip lining station to the next.  I remember being shocked at how high I was and the speed that I was traveling.

Monteverde Cloud Forest zip line consists of 15 cables and 18 platforms.  It’s an exciting and adventurous experience.  Views of the lake and Arenal Volcano are visible as you fly above the rainforest canopy.  Although it wasn’t my first time zip lining, it was certainly one of the most adventurous life experiences that I have had, and I would defiantly recommend it to anyone traveling to Costa Rica.  My only advice would be to go on a day that wasn’t raining.

Happy zip lining!

The Coast of Dunedin

Last week I traveled to Dunedin, a small coastal town on the Gulf of Mexico.  Dunedin is a hidden gem near Tampa and Clear Water Bay, with trendy outside cafe’s and a hiking-biking trail that runs through the center of town to the oceanfront.  Bikes can be rented for a small fee as you stop for drinks or lunch along the way.

Dunedin has a laid back feel to it and offers a variety of healthy restaurants, including a popular organic juice bar, which was my favorite way to kick start the day.

The Jolley Trolley is a bus that runs along the coast and travels to Clear Water Beach,  A day pass costs only $5.00.

Honeymoon Island is a barrier island off the coast of Dunedin, a beautiful secluded beach that stretches for four miles.  A trip not worth missing.

If you are traveling to Florida,  you may want to check out this beautiful, laid back community. I had no idea it existed, as I usually travel further south, so it was a complete surprise to find that a bit of “Old Florida” still exists.

Hazardous Hiking

I arrived at the base of Cathedral Rock in Sedona, Arizona, alone and stood reading the sign above indicating that I had to be prepared to rescue myself.  hmmm….

I was determined to hike Cathedral Rock although I had no knowledge of the landscape or terrain.  As I stood reading the sign about the possible dangers, I was reminded that I was now in Arizona, which had poisonous snakes and scorpions.  I then looked up at the peak of Cathedral Rock and started to question myself.  I had always been a solo hiker.  I loved being out in nature and exploring, but as I contemplated going up the various pathways alone, I started having fear of getting lost, falling and breaking a limb, or getting bit by a snake.  My mind went rampant with thoughts of what could go wrong.  I started to have cold feet.  Then suddenly, a woman appeared next to me.  I turned to her and asked her if she wanted to hike with me, so we began hiking up the steep and beautiful sandstone butte together.

Hiking has always been one of my passions.  I usually just show up wherever I am and start hiking, but this adventure reminded me of some of the dangers of solo exploration and how being prepared is probably a good idea.  In this case, a first aid kit, water, map of the area, a compass, food, a whistle and cell phone were all recommended.

Cathedral Rock was an amazing climb.  The rock formations became steeper with each step and had I been alone, I would not have ventured to the top, so I was grateful for my hiking companion who had hiked the peak in the past.  She led me to the top, where I sat and watched the sunrise over the the beautiful Arizona landscape.

Wherever you are hike, be mindful of the weather and what kind of obstacles or wildlife you could encounter.

Life is meant to be explored!  Be safe and have fun!

 

Costa Rican Raw

Cocoa has commonly been known as the “Drink of the Gods”, and has been around for more than one thousand years.  Most people have a passion for chocolate or cocoa but have not had the experience of seeing this exotic bean in its raw and natural form.

On a previous trip to a Costa Rican Organic Echo Farm, I had the opportunity to walk the grounds of the plantation, which consisted of over 300 trees that were over 30 years old.

The process begins with roasting and grinding the fermented cocoa beans.  The grinding process uses an ancient stone, “metate” which has been carved by indigenous people out of volcanic rock from a nearby volcano.  Once grinding is completed, a variety of New World ingredients such as Vanilla, Jamaica or Allspice, Spicy Chile, and Achiote or Annatto are selected or you can stick to your more basic European milk and sugar drink or chocolate bar.

Finca Luna Nueva offers a variety of organic and experiential experiences for those who are seeking a raw and natural experience.

For more information:

http://fincalunanuevalodge.com