Follow a winding road 1000 metres down into a steep valley surrounded by lush vegetation. See the turquoise blue river, steam pouring off her surface as she snakes through the valley floor. Soak yourself in a deliciously warm thermal pool, all to yourself, hanging over the edge of the cliffside while you stare off into the mountain valley. Let the warm waters pound on your back like a massage as they cascade down the mountain. And if you dare, climb into the very heart of the mountain through a black tunnel, torrid water pounding down from every crevice inside her, the hot blood of the mountain. Steam billows so thick you feel it in your lungs. Watch your step along the smooth rocks as you walk along them from ankle deep to neck deep water. At the end of the tunnel, in the mountains heart, sit and breath her in, feel her heat wrap you in a blanket. It’s impossible to tear yourself away; it’s like being back in the womb, the sounds, the comfort, the warmth, the peace you feel. But you must. The rest of the mountain is calling you. Dare to run through the blast of icy cascades pounding from the mountain top, the very mouth of the mountain. Pass through the frigid wall and reach the inside of the cavernous mouth, a warm reprieve, waste deep, with tiny smooth round tastebuds, pebbles on the floor, to massage your feet. Stare in awe at the stalactites, the strange smoothened figures on the walls and cavern ceiling, like grotesque teeth from thousands of years of dripping that warm, mineral rich water. And in the centre, a battering blast of hot water beckons you, dares you to try to withstand the power as the tongue of the mountain pounds on your back and pushes you down into the warm depths. Steamy breath gushes from her mouth out into the valley in clouds. Continue reading
Iceland was never originally on my radar- mostly because I thought it would be far too expensive. But it kept coming up again and again, and I couldn’t ignore the universe trying to send me a message. I was already in Europe, who knew when I would be back next… so why not? I looked at flights and while it was still an expensive flight, I had started dreaming about Iceland and knew I had to visit this place. I knew I made the right decision when my dear friend Emilee from back home in Canada messaged me to tell me her and another friend were heading to Iceland at the same time as me! That settled it. I booked my flights and made plans to meet the girls for an epic week long road trip through Iceland’s Ring Road. Emilee and Caitlyn had two weeks in Iceland, so we were going to start with the most exciting stuff in the South and work our way East then North, and then I would catch a bus from wherever we ended up after a week back to Reykjavik. Continue reading
I was scrambling to find a way to get to Belize to meet my dear friend from home Angela, as she had flown down to meet me and my dive course was already running behind. I spent endless hours trying to find the best, quickest and cheapest way to Belize City from Honduras, but let me tell you, it is not an easy trip to map out, unless you leave on a Monday! I was looking at having to take the ferry back to La Ceiba, a shuttle to Livingston Guatemala, another Ferry over into Belize and then another bus up to Belize City – and because of ferry and bus schedules it would take me 3 days!!!! Continue reading
Ah Semuc Champey, the treasure of Guatemala. How many times did I Google you and stare in wonder at your picturesque beauty? Too many to count. You were the main reason I returned to Guatemala. How could I say I traveled this beautiful country if I had not rested my eyes on the fabled Semuc Champey, meaning ‘where the river hides beneath the earth’.
As I write this, I’m sitting in my rustic little ‘A’ frame thatch-roofed hut. The front end, opposite the door and where my bed is positioned, has a three foot high railing and that is all- it’s left entirely open. The rain is hammering down, the torrents coming down in waves, thunder is reverberating in the distance and the occasional flash of lightening sends a blaze of light into the hut. It smells of wet jungle – moist vegetation and damp earth. I sit shrouded in the opaque protection of my bug net and once again I am astounded that this is my life. Continue reading