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Tatiana’s Travel Diary

Wednesday, 28 Jan 2004

Location: Puerta Vallarta

MapBirth Day Update - I am 35 and love it!

H e l l o !!!!
Hello friends, family, loved ones.
I figure it is high time I send you word about my whereabouts, well-being and adventures. I am still in Vallarta. With the exception of a few day trips here and there, this has been my base and my home for almost two months now. I am not yet tired of the busy pace of this city, but am beginning to prepare for my return to Canada.

Since I last wrote, much has happened. I recovered from the Mexican winter cold, I saw a whale dancing just off shore from the beach from my apartment, and I cruised to Yelapa for lunch by yacht. I have dined in the most chichi of restaurants and eaten dinner for $2.60 at a fish taco stand. I have danced to reggae, covers of Toto and to DJs from Mexico City. I have been awake when the sun was rising and staring out at the ocean as the sun set, spotting Venus shining in the sky each and every night. I have met locals and travellers alike, experiencing and developing deep connections in short periods of time. I have learned a ton more Spanish and spend my days speaking a mixture of Spanish, English and French - sometimes speaking all three at once.

After having made a decision to actually vacation a bit while I was here, (my laptop agreed as it stopped working the day after that) I stopped (trying to work/working so much and began to do things such as go to the beach. After a month and a half, I am proud to say that I finally have a tan. I have spent the past week making daily visits to the beach to do yoga and read and write, swim and Be. I am enjoying myself. Not to say that there has not been struggle, but nothing that isnít an opportunity to learn, and, as you know, I never pass up the opportunity to grow.

I plan to go to Guadalajara on Feb 4th to 7th with Jude and some cool girls (Iara and Natalia) I met here. They are also Aquarians and are going to celebrate their birthdays there. Iara has an apartment and has invited me to stay. Jude and I had planned on going and so, the Universe, as always, has helped to put everything into place to make it possible. I have met soooo many people from Guadalajara and I love them all. They are so nice and open and light in spirit. I will visit some of them while I am there and have even been invited to a wedding, although I am not sure if I will attend or not. I am looking forward to the trip, as I have not explored Mexico beyond an hour north and an hour south of Vallarta.

Today I have been invited to go parasailing. Until the opportunity arose I wrote it off as an unsafe (and costly) tourist attraction, however, Jude and others have told me that it is beautiful and peaceful and that they loved the experience. So, I am open to doing it and will let you know what it is like as I may just take them up on it. For a country, or a society with little income (The daily wage is about $5 a DAY with minimum wage at $4.50 US) and so much poverty, the people here are the most generous I have encountered, and I, having been doing work to open up to receiving, must be ready cause I have been offered and accepted many gifts. I have discovered that just as I love to give, so do others and it is wonderful to be able to receive, and to give the opportunity to experience the joy they get from giving.

Friday I head to Sayulita for two days and a night. It is a small town north of Vallarta filled with artists and hippies, surfers and Shaman. I love it and if I were to stay here longer or come back, that is where I would settle..for a while. I have been several times (it is an hour and a $1.70 Mexican bus ride away) and I enjoy the peace, the most incredible fish tacos (from Miguel´s stand, who by the way is also an Aquarius!) and the overall vibe of the place and people. I discovered the cheapest, cleanest and most quaint posada run by an Italian man named Willie. It is called Body and Soul. They offer a free yoga class on Saturdays and so I am planning my trip to attend. They have a little restaurant and a tiny exercise gym and is run by super nice and charming people.

Jude and I are planning one more day trip to Los Caletas. It is a 40 minute catamaran ride away and by day is a like a retreat (perfect research opportunity for me) with nothing to do but sit in a hammock, do yoga, kayak, snorkel and eat. It is director John Houstonís (Night of the Iguana) former hideaway. At night it is transformed into a romantic evening getaway featuring a torch lit gourmet meal, open bar (normal for tours here) and then a pre-Hispanic show in the jungle featuring a story telling the history of the Corn Men through dancing and music. That experience (called Rhythms of the Night), will have to wait until next time. Or at least until I am invited or have someone in my life to go on a romantic dinner with. No tears here. I am not at all sad about being alone right now. In fact, it is perfect. I am enjoying dating my self.

Today I turn 35 and as I look at my life, I give thanks and am grateful for how blessed I am. There are times when I focus on what I donít have, but more and more I am becoming aware of how much I DO have and man, my life is abundant.

I thank God for this life, for all that I have and for each and everyone one of you.

That's about it for now folks. I go now to treat myself to a salad at my fav veggie restaurant called Papaya 3 and am due at the beach for yoga, and perhaps a parasail. I will send you word of more adventures, well, when I do.

In peace and love,
Tanya Leah Marie Nemchin