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Bright and Cheery Days Wandering Cali, Colombia

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I can see many alphabet letters in this painting of a brightly colored lizard. It is almost like that book Where’s Waldo. You have to look carefully to see them, but they are there. I see many O’s (but one is quite distinct), a G, lot’s of V’s and a C in the same place the G is. Can you see them too? Looking at art painted as murals in the San Antonio district of Cali,Colombia is one of my favorite tourist adventures.  Day 3 Cali La Chorrea 047

Then there is this crazy, scary clown trash receptacle. I see them all over Colombia and I can’t imagine a child wanting to deposit trash in it’s mouth! However, I like the look of the waste container next to the sign that points to the bathrooms -> baños! Something is so interesting in this photo with the play equipment in the background. To me, it is the horror of the clown alongside the playground. Can you tell I don’t like clowns? Especially the way it says Para la Basura (for the trash) with the huge hole in the center!

Cali with Martha 022

Finally, I love this photo of my feet on my astrology sign written in Spanish. It makes me smile. Just wandering around taking photos, you never know how delightful they will be until you look at them.

Janet day 4 024

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Spirits Do You Believe?

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I took this photo the very first day I saw Villa Migelita. She was old, and tired, but so full of potential. I felt excitement just walking on the grounds of such an old Villa. When I looked at the photos from that day, this photo was very striking. What do you see? I see an orb, very clearly, it was a sign from my deceased daughter. I truly believe that she guided me to my place and watches over me as I complete my journey on this Earth. villa-migelita-072 She is my light, she lives within me. She is always with me. No matter what you believe. This is an example of what is written about over and over by people who have lost loved ones too soon. This is the soul of Misha, my daughter.

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The Unpopular Move

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A problem that many take part in which can be easily rectified is bending to what appears to be the popular choice of what is societal standards.  Communal standards are established by following the crowd; of which many engage in. I gave in to that lifestyle when married to both of my husbands. I was always so worried about what others thought of me. However, to be content in life we need to let go of what we think our life is supposed to be based on societal standards, and look inside ourselves for how life should be based on our own approach. We have the power inside ourselves to find our destiny. Not completely of course, but at least to a certain extent. We must challenge ourselves. It is that simple.

When I moved to Colombia, I surprised many people, but more than that they were judgmental. I found myself more alone than ever before in my life, which is interesting when you delve into this subject. Why do so many people feel they have a say in someone’s decisions in life? Is this societal behavior or something else? Here I was bereft from a horrible divorce and loss of a child, yearning for change, but I encountered really bad reactions to my decision. They were subtle, but definitely there. I had friends of many years ignore my emails I would write from Colombia telling them of my adventures and happiness. People who were like family to me. They just didn’t answer me. It was hurtful. They judged me, even when they knew what I had gone through for almost three years. That is the most interesting part of my unpopular move. They knew if I had stayed and found a house in Florida, my life would not have changed, it would have remained the same. It would have been a continuation of the hell I had gone through. Yet, they felt that was the best way for me to live my life?

I based my decision to move on many factors, but the most important one was I needed to find me again. I could have stayed in Florida and done nothing to better my lifestyle, and conformed to others opinions or move to a new country and follow my dream of opening up a bed and breakfast. A dream that had not really taken shape, but it was there inside of me, deep inside with a solid foundation of anticipation. I had to remind myself of this over and over during the past years. I did not want mediocrity, a life waiting for others to change while I stood by and watched. I wanted to live. I had learned in a very hard way life is short when my daughter was murdered. I knew that I no longer could stand by and wait for others to come to my way of thinking. I just did what I needed to do for me. It didn’t fit in to others thought processes. I understand that. I really took a wild leap into the unknown. But it was my wild leap, just a short 3 and 1/2 hour flight from where I used to live. If I had moved back to Newport, Rhode Island where I lived when I married my first husband I imagine it would have been more acceptable, and a lot farther away. It would take me twice the time to get there from South Florida, then coming from South America. But it was acceptable to the standards of those who felt for some unknown reason they should have a say in what I should do for my future life. I image that moving with a guy who was younger than me also played into the detriment surrounding my move also.

Now here I am in Colombia which just made the list of Forbes Coolest Places to Visit for 2016. I have been in two articles, one in Yahoo Finance and the other in International Living Incomes Abroad and my Bed and Breakfast called Villa Migelita is open and running. I have regular guests and am meeting new people who have enriched my life. I have learned Spanish. I have continued my dream without worry of others opinions nor suggestions. My unpopular move has turned out to be just the thing I needed to do, not only for myself, but for troubled relationships with those people in my life who were wounded during a very difficult time. I have found that time and patience brought me what I needed to heal. I stopped thinking about what could go wrong, and started thinking about all the things that could go right. Is my future certain? No. Of course not, we can never have a perfect life. I understand that from my past. I just know I have made the best out of a situation that was going in the wrong direction, and I am happy I did. It has turned out well for me, and for that I am grateful. I will never know what the future will bring to me, but I am making the best out of my present moments. That is all we can do in this life, make the most of what is given to us, and then move forward from there.

 

 

 

 

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An Amphitheater from the Sky

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The glorious sunny days of the mountains in Colombia, Valle del Cauca department are depicted perfectly in these photos taken from a Parapente in the sky. A challenge some are not up to taking, (including me), yet I have made a New Year’s promise to myself to do this soon. These photos capture the magnificence of the grandeur and beauty the Universe gives to us daily.

Credit for images from the sky needs to be given to Vuelos En Parapente, who operate here in La Buitrera de Palmira, Colombia.

Palmira Valle is known for Parapente and is visited year round by adventurers from all over the world to do just this. A ride that surely shows that Heaven can be found on Earth. Visit my website to book a stay in Paradise.