Mindscraps: D’Cache to the Artwalk at the Miracle Mile

It appears the Flamenco restaurant will be my home away from home. Friday night I organized a girls night out and took them all to D’Cache for sangria, chocolate souffle and live Flamenco! This time I tried various tapas: empanadas, pinchos de carne, mushroom pizette and fried yucca… exquisite!

The restaurant was a hit with the other six women who joined and we all end up showing off our sultry Flamenco moves along with another all female birthday group.

I’ve decided I need to work there. The romantic ambiance of the candlelit restaurant, the savory food, the sweet sangria and the live Flamenco music infect me with an utter sensation of feeling alive with magic! I’ll be calling the restaurant tomorrow… informing them they have a new waitress… in lesser words. 😉

After dinner, I felt like I had stepped back into Central America as we hit a latino club for some reggaeton! The night was a blast and the women were fabulous… we can’t wait to do it all again!!

Saturday was all about expression. Art class with Clara Berta and her two other students was a spirit-lifting success… smashing glass, white-washing a painted canvas to begin anew and adding the final touches to a third. All three pieces I’m currently working on look promising… promising enough for me at least! I’ll post when they’re complete.

I met with Clara again in the afternoon after she clued me into the autumn artwalk at the Miracle Mile. We discovered a great new gallery Art Space Ware House, which opened just three weeks ago. Some photo on canvas modified with texture and paint has inspired me to experiment with modifying my own photos soon!

In one of the galleries I picked up an informative magazine about The Julia Dean Photo Workshops. Apparently the artist is going to begin offering workshops in Guatemala. I just about died. I’m going to contact her in the mere hope that somehow I can convince her she needs me to help with something… anything!! I’ve certainly got plenty of photos and connections in Guatemala!

The highlight of our Miracle Mile exploration though would have to be Colleen French and her Renegade Dinner Club. Owner of two restaurants in Portland, OR, Colleen lives in LA after falling for an Cali dude. Consequently, no longer cooks in her own restaurants, but still relishes in her passion for cooking by offering to cook for anyone willing to buy the food. She and friends had just recently traveled out to have a gourmet dinner in the desert. They trucked in a beautiful hand carved table made from shipping pallets, strung together sheets and fabric for a colorful, make-shift canopy and dined in the desert! I LOVE the concept. Colleen even has her truck set-up to be a rustic, portable kitchen, complete with two propane-fueled burners. We spotted her outside the gallery that featured the set up from the dinner in the desert an old record-player accompanied her slow cooked pulled-pork and chicken… all served from the back of her truck. Both were a savory surprise!

Mindscraps: The Dizzy Donkey Dance

Lately, I feel as if I’m caught up in a never-ending game of pin the tail on the donkey…

The nearly non-existent trickle of income is my blindfold. Short on funds, the hunt for a decent wage is a constant distraction from my true goals. I can’t seem to see past the “no cash” dilemma. So I focus on trying to make ends meet, instead of focusing on what my heart calls me to do. And that’s the irony. The more I allow myself to stray away from my true heart’s desires… the less success I find. The more I give away my time, energy and talents to outside aims, the more I find them used, abused and under-valued. I’m so eager to help. But in my eagerness, I’m learning, that “take advantage” seems to be the law of the land. I must be more wary of where I decide to invest. Lately, it feels as if my “investments” have only been sucking me dry.

It is the mysterious adventure of life that is constantly spinning me, whirling me, sending me in somersaults. I LOVE it. I LOVE the commotion. I LOVE the thrill. I LOVE her, life. But, at times, when I come up for air, I end up dizzy and confused. I know what’s written upon my heart… but which way was it that I needed to go? Which way is forward and which way is backward again? What step is the right step toward achieving my goals?

The hope? Despite the blindfold and the dizzy dance, the donkey – representative of the longings of my heart – is still there, whether I see her or not. Grasping at capital can momentarily obscure my vision. Life and her wondrous, thrilling adventure can disorient me. Yet, nothing can rob me of what lies upon my heart.

So, with the naivety of a child, I still believe and I will still try… to pin that tail on the donkey!

A quiet moment with myself: Let the dizziness clear. Realize the blindfold is a blessing in disguise. Use not the eyes of illusion to make out the way, but the inner eye of faith, wisdom and intuition.
Continue reading “Mindscraps: The Dizzy Donkey Dance”

Mind Scraps: Challenged to Become Divine Lovers?

A brief email from Caballo Blanco inspired me to respond with this:

Challenges are the training ground for restoring us to become the divine, loving beings we are destined to be.

Posting the quote as my status on Facebook (ironically enough if you see my prior post) instigated this:

Me: I do believe I’m learning more and more how to comfort myself…

Radt Dujarric: pa na platano y pa vacio jaiva!

Me: okay that’s kind of slang/alternate meaning so I’m having difficulty understanding it…

Radt Dujarric: its a matter of time B-)

“People with courage and character always seem sinister to the rest. Since the bourgeois prefers comfort to pleasure, convenience to liberty, and a pleasant temperature to the deathly inner consuming fire.. Solitude is independence.” ~Hermann Hesse

Me: I agree with much of that. A strong quote. But in the end I ask… is independence what we should truly be after? Or rather, is it LOVE?

Now LOVE doesn’t comply with preferring “comfort to pleasure, convenience to liberty, and a pleasant temperature to the deathly inner consuming fire” but it also doesn’t comply with “solitude.”

So perhaps instead of it being “A” or “B”… it’s simply “C”?

Radt Dujarric: depending on what kind of love… we all have our secret garden and sometimes love consumes your own by sacrificing it for the most common of the interests.
if by loving you manage to share the dreams besides the bed and remain being yourself … and keep your own inner space for yourself… then you’ve found it all.

Me: Wow. Beautiful Radt.

Mind Scraps: The DNA of Music… The Beginning of the End of Idolizing Talent?

Improvox is a new iPad application developed by the concert pianist Robert Taub and his company MuseAmi. Improvox came about after Mr. Taub tried to help his kids learn music. (New York Times)

Amazing, exciting… and thought-provoking.

So I’m seeing a trend here… this program which can turn a tone deaf crow into a harmonized singer is just the latest tool that demonstrates how “talent” is becoming less and less of a limited commodity. Modern technology is essentially enabling people to have “unnatural talent.”

An interesting phenomenon when you consider that our society IDOLIZES people who possess talent and talent alone. So, I ask you, if talent is no longer a “limited resource” what will our society value? As any valued “talent” becomes a technology that anyone can buy, what, then, will make people stand out from one another?

One of two things… or maybe both:

1. People with the ability to constantly and I mean constantly invent and reinvent.

2. People who love and live from the heart.

That’s my hypothesis anyway.

So, my advice to all… start stimulating your creative juices are start really learning how to live and love from the heart!

FYI: I”ve come to find that, when you live from the heart, you end up hitting a reservoir of creativity you never knew you had. Well, perhaps, we never have it. Perhaps through the act of loving we simply become the best “conductor” there is for creativity/creation.

Hmmmm… that’s a thought.

Love is the optimal conductor for creation.

Didn’t we already kind of know that?


I don’t know… maybe it’s just the way I see things in the wee hours of the morning.

Friendship Poem

For my birthday, a dear friend I met through Couchsurfing in Cancun wrote me the following:

Lamneto mucho no estar hoy contigo en este dia tan especial…. Tu cumpleaños!

So much I lament not being abel to be with you on this special day… your birthday!

Aveces siento que eres un angel que vino a iluminar mi vida y la de los demás Csurfers y lo

Sometimes I feel that you are an angel that came to illuminate my life and the lives of other Couchsurfers and the

Ultimo que quisiera es que llegue el dia en que no te vea mas porque se que tarde o temprano te iras de Mexico

Last thing I would want is to come the day that I don’t see you anymore because I know that sooner or later you will leave Mexico

Rompiendo los corazones de todos los que te amamos, eres una gran mujer y una gran amiga con un

Breaking the hearts of all that love you, you are a great woman and a great friend with a

Alma que brilla con una luz tan hermosa para alimentar la esperanza de mas personas como tu y como yo.

Soul that shines with a light so beautiful it feeds the hope of more people like you and like me.

Feliz cumpleaños Hermosa

Happy birthday beautiful

te quiero muchisisisimo!!!!

I care about you so much!!!!

que rica amistad!!!

What a blessed friendship!!!

Thank you Victor. I love you with all my heart.

Love Note

Just as the tears dry up, the emotions wring my heart again, squeezing out yet more bittersweet tears.

I cannot describe the EXCITEMENT and ANTICIPATION I feel for this next, upcoming adventure… this move to L.A. I feel as if the seconds could not fly by fast enough. The seconds that separate him and I. He with the widest of grins and the giggliest of laughs. He that is always sprinkling the sparkling dust of laughter into my own eyes.

And yet, as the seconds tick away, I can’t help but feel how quickly my last few moments with some incredibly moving people I’ve met here in the Riviera Maya… are vanishing. I couldn’t put into words everything, all the beloved attributes that have made me fall completely head over heels in love for most amazing friends here. And I’m not going to try. My words couldn’t do their loveliness any justice.

Just please know…

Juan Carlos
CS Cancun Community

Each of you, in your own most unique and enchanting ways, have captured my heart. I love you guys… and I always will.

Back to Blogging with a Blast of Inspiration!

More than 75 days of blogging silence from yours truly. That’s… disappointing actually. But life has thrown me a few curve balls these past 2 1/2 months. You could say at least one of them smacked me dead center in the forehead… hence the proverbial “knockout” and “disappearing blog” act.

During the silence, lots of life has happened. To sum it up, you could say that I’ve had a more than a fistful of truly heart-movingly RICH experiences… that were all strung along a coarse strand of significant hardship and trial.

Yesterday, in fact, I took another hard hit. This one didn’t knock me out though. Rather, it knocked me back awake… at least I think it did.

Things haven’t been matching up. Opportunities, yes more than one, that seemed golden suddenly tarnished into fool’s gold.

Yesterday was the climax of the second “not gold but fool’s gold” enlightenment.

I’ll bypass the details about what happened with whom for now. That’s not what’s important. What’s important is learning and moving forward.

Learning and growing:

1. I’ve really got to stop trusting so wholeheartedly at the first “hello.” I offer my trust on a silver platter without doing my homework to see just whom it is I’m offering this fine delicacy. That’s just imprudent. Personal improvement goal number one: Stay open, willing, friendly and receptive but be more prudent and weary with whom I trust.

And if you think I’m talking about love… I’m not. I’m talking about work and employment.

2. See the warning signs. People leaving the company should be at least a yellow flag that prompts me to investigate “why.” People holding the exact same position they were holding six years ago, without the slightest change in “standard of living” or even upgraded equipment should be a blaring red flag. And there were more… with my “after the fact” perspective I see that so clearly now. Personal improvement goal number two: Interview the company even as they are interviewing you.

The bright-side:

In just two months I went from having experience solely in Journalistic Photography to having plenty of content for a solid portfolio in Lifestyle Photography and Wedding Photography. That of which I’m very proud. I learn fast and work even faster!

The surprise:

Yesterday, as I was trying to calm my emotions and meditate on what’s been happening I decided to turn to the greats for inspiration, look to the words of wise that have walked before me. Each time I’ve done that has marked a coming pivotal period in my growth, success and achievement. This time, instead of taking months to remember the inspirational quotes from world sages remedy, I remembered in the very same afternoon. Yes! A sign of growth! Well, my to-do’s reminded me actually. In a moment of distress I decided it was better to put this spring of hurt, negative energy toward something useful and good. Transform it. Thus, I decided to turn to the weary task of cleaning out my computer and hard drives (they’re bogged with lord know what.) During this, I stumbled upon some business mentoring articles I had saved. Since I had saved them I had never read them. I was always brushing them off: Later. Later. I’ll have more time to read them later. In my determination to clean out my hard drive and computer once and for all, I almost brushed by them once again. But, I paused and considered: This is where I need the most guidance right now. There is no time better than NOW. Read them!

Less than ten minutes in my spirits were lifted, my confidence restored and my drive to overcome not only renewed but SUPERCHARGED.

One of the very first quotes that jumped out at me while reading stopped me in my tracks:

“Within each of us is a NATURAL PATH. Someone who ALIGNS themselves 100% to their PATH finds an EXTRAORDINARY sense of FLOW and ENERGY comes into their life or work.”

Wait a minute! I just had that! I was just there!! During my last few days in Chihuahua and even more poignantly so during my first several weeks in the Riviera Maya I was nearly EXPLOSIVE with energy. Getting an average of 3-4 hours of sleep I night I quickly became the a CS social butterfly, got involved in photography projects, lined up not one but two jobs, completed daily runs along the shore of the emerald and sapphire colored sea, visited and charmed the tropical island of Isla Mujeres and kept up a very active night life… and I was feeling GREAT. The best shape of my life, the best health of my life…

Pffff. What happened??!! On the contrary the past two to three weeks I’ve felt drained of energy, unrefreshed as I woke up feeling worse than when I had gone to bed, little desire for my normal here-there-everywhere social life. Just zapped. Accordingly, the tension gathered, the health went downhill and I got grumpier at realizing I was getting grumpier. I never lost the “Que Rico!” but I was feeling it less and less. (Thanks to amazing friends they really kept blazing moments of it alive even amidst my period of waning energy.)

So what gives? I asked myself. I’ve definitely gone through a tough bout of trial so the zapped energy makes sense. Pffff I deserve a break. I reasoned. But I didn’t want to stop there. Why all the hardship and trial I wondered? What happened that made me suddenly plummet head first from the exhilarating heights of feeling an “EXTRAORDINARY sense of FLOW and ENERGY” in my life and work?

The blog.

I’ve had the blog for several years now. But, it wasn’t until Chihuahua that I decided to really start sharing the juicy stuff. The crazy stuff. The weird, Locura de Laura spiritual stuff. When I began really writing everything that I was feeling and experiencing not just “parts of it” is when I felt the blast of energy. I had even written about how I felt the call to write it all… now. Then, the blog went offline, the energy and flow peaked and I was on a fast-track to decent.

Wow. A powerful realization. I knew that writing and sharing and opening up was therapeutic. But geez, I didn’t realize the extent of which I need my blog for my own personal release and self-development. Maybe some of you out there read it. Maybe not. While I’m truly heartened and utterly touched to get the feedback I occasionally get, I just realized how much this blog is for me. My development, my growth, my health… me. Without it… I began holding everything within. Blocking my flow, which manifested both physically and in my external life experiences. I need to express and to express freely… my precious little blog lets me do that. She lets me blab and blab and blab and never once talks back and tells me “no,” “can’t,” “stop,” “you’re doing it wrong,” “you’re a failure.” She simple lets me share, express and be free to be in love… in love with this wonderful blue little planet I so adoringly call home.

Yelp! How excited I am to have my blog back!!!

Mind Scraps: Shining From Within

You call it coincidence, I call it a small detail of an intricate plan.

The following words from the Pillar today:

I enjoy always your posts and pictures and am always hoping that foundation gets formed for you and that you are enjoying your journey. One thing that does strike me is that you so stand out in any picture you are in. That is probably for many reasons, but mainly because your spirit shines so brightly, as does your sheer joy in every moment. Keep it up, good luck, and update me as you have time.

Shortly after graciously reading the Pillar’s charitable words, I began cleaning up my desktop and trashing files I no longer needed. That’s when I stumbled upon the photo below. It’s been months since I grabbed it of the web. Unfortunately, I can’t remember from where. I haven’t seen it since I copied it to my desktop. How fitting that I find it now. For me, the image is captivating, beautiful… utterly moving. It’s what I aspire to be… from the inside out.