World Home

I’ve been back in Los Angeles a little less than a month and I’ve already taken off for one of my favorite homes away from home, Ojai, and my favorite simple little hotel, Ojai Rancho Inn. I am quite adept at packing up and taking off for locations near and far. This one is just 45 minutes away, and I have escaped many times to find peace and inspiration. It has helped clear my mind so I can reflect and write.

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The simple yet comfortable rooms.

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The very rad little bar.

And after having been away for four months, traveling from Costa Rica to Morocco, this is truly like coming home.

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Where would my writing be without Ojai? It’s sustaining energy has contributed to Night Angels Chronicles, Into the World, Letters from Purgatory, and so much more. And now I breathe in and close my eyes and smile..and sip my cabernet and listen to Spanish music. So many things to think about.

Stand Up To Fear and Bring It Down!

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Love this vibrant and mysteriously beautiful city. Saddened to hear of more violence.

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Walked these streets last summer and I will walk them again. Never give 8n to fear. Stand strong and follow the light.

Dreams of Marrakech

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So happy to be here in this city of magic. Staying at the  awesome Riad Dar El Aila. The door is about half my height but then you step into the airy courtyard.

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And as I am obsessed with doors here are a few…

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And this one in particular, I’ve never seen a door to a school quite like this before.

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Tomorrow morning I wind my way through the streets  to the bus station and eleven hours later will find myself in the desert for the next month. More on that later…

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Each path has its own story.

ISLANDS & LAKES & the SKY IN-BETWEEN, Part II

10387403_10156239026520360_2458839909572742388_n[1]The little Cessna plane that took me on the last leg of my journey from San Jose to Liberia, in a thunderstorm, no less.

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I was the only passenger on that bumpy ride with two jolly pilots, who laughing and joking, plunged in and out of clouds, vision obscured, rain pummeling the panes, the plane shaking like a tin can, dropping suddenly, swerving left and right. Couldn’t we simply go around the clouds, I kept thinking, well, actually screaming in my head, not out loud, thank goodness. But, apparently, it was all no big deal, we made it safely and once on the ground I became quite brave and thought wow, now that’s really living, wasn’t that an amazing experience? And the pilots just sauntered off because they do this every day.

This, after a 1:30 am start in Los Angeles, a seven hour layover on El Salvador, before my short flight to San Jose and quick change, running to that little tin contraption for the 45 minute flight to Lyberia. Pouring rain upon my arrival. Completely empty airport, in fact, it was ten o’clock at night and they were turning off all the lights. Never had that experience before.  And never so glad to see my friendly neighbor for the next month, Henry who drove me the remaining two hours, along increasingly smaller and steeper and more pot-holed roads until we finally reached my little paradise. Friends, Barbara and Lawrence’s hideaway home.

And who kept me company on this journey and on all my journeys?

10390524_10156239027345360_7216880670691149963_n[1]Here we have my staples of travel:

  1. Indiana Jones hat, because you never know when something creepy or crawly might plop down and try to embed itself in ones hair.
  2. Leather backpack–to go with leather Indiana Jones hat. Indestructible, it holds my most important possession, my computer. And my Tablet when I want to put on headphones and shut out the world.
  3. Tumi shoulder bag. Also indestructible. Has accompanied me here, there and everywhere. Forget those ugly and often gaudy and way too noticeable designer bags. Never owned one. Well, ok, except for that one understated, black Kate Spade that I have had for years and use on rare occasions when I simply have no choice but to dress up, which I am quite capable of doing if needed.
  4. Cozy mystery. This one happens to be by Donna Leon, but my favorites right now continue to be the Inpsector Ikmen series by Barbara Nadel that take place in Istanbul. I read every one of them before my visit there last summer and they were spot on with atmosphere and fascinating characters.

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  1. Oh, and who is this, hitching a ride? Godzilla. Just found him in my bag, a pleasant surprise, he was there on Martha’s Vineyard and didn’t cause any trouble so I think I will keep him on all my journeys. He seems to enjoy the adventures  and looks at the world the same way I do; with wide-eyed wonder. Others might interpret his expression as aggressive, I choose to interpret it as wide-eyed wonder.

And that’s it, and here I am, above Lake Arenal in a place without an address. Perfect! 12106868_10156239900505360_5401131365855000888_n[1] 12088498_10156240463485360_705898822650164991_n[1]