Tag Archives travel

Traveling Through Terror

by Monday, November 30, 2015

Over the last few days, due to the horrific events that has happened in Paris and Beirut, my normally excited, cheerful wander-lusting, women’s travel group https://www.facebook.com/groups/girlswhotravel/, has now become scared. Many sharing their condolences, some stories of first hand accounts, and others now considering rerouting or canceling, all together, future travel plans. Traveling through terror is something that many women, or men for that matter, are afraid to do.

This is understandable, but also very sad. The normally, bubbly and enthusiastic globetrotting girls, are,  instead of talking about upcoming trips, and sharing amazing photos of exotic locations, are now asking advice on if they should go on their previously planned trip to Paris or anywhere in Europe at all.  Many are talking about all of the deaths and some are discussing the bigotry that has now, and sadly, not surprising, that has spiked against Muslims.thewanderlustyogi.net

One girl shared that she was in the club when the attacks happened and laid on top of dead bodies, pretending she was dead to save herself. It was very scary to hear about and we were all so happy that she was okay. Another Muslim girl shared that since the attacks, she has been kicked out of another travel group because of her race[religion]. It was awful to hear and we all gave her words of comfort and acceptance.

thewanderlustyogi.net

shirt worn by a girl who was at the nightclub in Paris when the terrorists attacked (she played dead, lying on dead bodies)

Now these women, are in reality, strangers. I don’t think I’ve met any of them personally, all except the four girls that I encouraged to join the group, but we all feel like sisters.

It’s a very weird and beautiful thing. There are  over 20,000 active members worldwide in the girls who travel group; coming from all races, religions, socioeconomic backgrounds, ages, belief systems, etc,  yet this group has that common bond of the love of travel. We give each other travel advice, inspire each other that we can travel solo, support each other during breakups or hardships, and come together during a crisis, like we did when a girl was mugged at knife-point in Sri Lanka and came to us for help.  The outpouring of assistance made me so proud to be a member of this group. We were able to give her the phone numbers and address of her Embassy and contacted her mother. Thankfully she is totally fine and after her return home, updated us that she was okay, and how appreciative she was from all of our support.thewanderlustyogi.net

Many of these girls have since joining the group, have done meet-ups and some became long-term travel partners. I hope to someday, through my travels, end up meeting one of these lovely ladies. This group has something magical about it. Most of us can’t go a day without popping in just to say hello or read some advice or a story that one of us has shared.

Through this group, I have been inspired to  finally get the courage to take my first solo trip, which is coming in just two short weeks, to Belize.  This group also helped me find an amazing travel steal, where I got tickets from Boston to San Jose, Costa Rica, roundtrip for $150.00!!  This group also gave me insight on places I my have never considered visiting before, such as Tel Aviv or places I have never heard of, like Seychelles. I also felt a connection when girls would share their heartfelt break up stories and how travel gave them a new lease on life.

thewanderlustyogi.net

Seychelles, Africa

Since I started writing this post a few weeks ago, I stopped it altogether, midway. I was at a point where my social media was a constant stream of bigotry, anger and hatred. I literally needed to just get away from it all. I decided it was best for me to go on a social media detox for a few weeks, to reset and regroup my emotional state and disconnect a bit.thewanderlustyogi.net

This was one of the best decisions I’ve made in a long time.  I was in tune with my body enough to notice that the emotional distress I was having, due to all of the upsetting things I was reading, was actually taking a toll on my health. I couldn’t sleep, I had trouble eating, I felt teary at times, out of the blue, I felt agitated and extremely stressed.thewanderlustyogi.net

In my absence from social media; I read, spent quality time with my family and friends, where I was actually completely present, I meditated, did yoga and through this I felt a subtle change happening in my body. It was a cleansing and it was exactly what I needed.

 

 

thewanderlustyogi.net

The Ultimate Yogi DVD collection by Travis Elliot-my favorite go to yoga/mediation fix

http://www.theultimateyogi.com/

Now that I am back, I am happy to report that although things in the media are still heated and distressing, my girls who travel group is back to its old self again. I was so relieved and happy to see, that the massive posts of asking if people should cancel their trips, were now filled with stories and pictures of girls on their travels all over the world, some even in Paris. This made me smile.

thewanderlustyogi.net

me in Paris at the “love lock bridge” near Notre Dame last August (2014)

This world can sometimes be a very cruel and scary place, but when you think about all the good it has, you realize that the world can continue to hold beauty and love if you choose to seek it out.thewanderlustyogi.net

 

 

PAD THAI

by Monday, November 2, 2015

My inspiration for this months GLOBAL RECIPE  is Pad Thai. I had this in Bangkok, Thailand and it was my first real street food experience.  I was excited and nervous at the same time. It looked so good and was so cheap I couldn’t wait to try it.  In the back of my mind, however, I had that creeping thought that I could possibly get food poisoning if I eat this.

I ate it and I not only, didn’t get food poisoning, but it was the best pad Thai I have ever eaten in my life!  Sometimes when I think of my visit to Thailand I think about this dish and eating it at home at a restaurant, always makes me smile.

I will get back to Thailand one day to explore more of that beautiful country, but in the meantime, creating this dish is a way for me to remember the culture and the friendly Thai people I met on my visit.


 

PAD THAI (serves 4)

ingredients:

  • 16 oz. rice noodles
  • 20 peeled shrimp (raw)
  • 4 cooked chicken thighs (chopped)
  • 3 T  soy sauce
  • 5 cloves garlic (minced)
  • 1 red chile (chopped) to taste *optional
  • 2 t grated ginger
  • 8 green onions (chopped)
  • 2 eggs
  • 7 oz. bean sprouts
  • 1/2 cups dry roasted peanuts (chopped)
  • 3 t vegetable oil
  • 2/3 cup chicken stock
  • lime wedges- *optional
  • 4 T rice vinegar
  • 4 T brown sugar
  • 1/4 t cayenne pepper
  • crushed red pepper flakes-to taste *optional
  • sriracha (additional topping-optional)
  • ***some recipes call for fish sauce- (I don’ t like it, so I omitted this from the recipe)

instructions:

  1. cook rice noodles according to instructions on package
  2. heat vegetable oil in large skillet (medium-high)
  3. crack eggs into hot oil, cook until firm
  4. add shrimp, cook 2 minutes
  5. add minced garlic, cook one minute
  6. stir in cooked chicken
  7. add: chicken stock, vinegar, brown sugar, red chile, grated ginger, cayenne pepper ( here is where you would add fish sauce-if desired), stir one to two minutes
  8. add noodles, stir to mix all ingredients
  9. add soy sauce (more if desired)
  10. stir in bean sprouts, green onions
  11. garnish with chopped peanuts and lime wedges
  12. serve with sriracha sauce (optional)

video to come of the live cooking demo

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And the final product:

thewanderlustyogi.net

pad thai

Dental Work Done in Paradise: UPDATE!

by Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Last winter I wrote an article about “dental tourism” in Costa Rica.

What is dental tourism?

Dental Tourism (also called dental vacations or commonly called “dental holidays” amongst Europeans) is  a subset of “medical tourism”. It involves individuals seeking dental care outside of their local healthcare systems and may be accompanied by a vacation. (Wikipedia)

My article wrote about how patients living in the United States are getting dental treatment done in other countries, Costa Rica being one in particular, due to the cost effectiveness.  Dental treatment done in such countries can save you as much as 70% off for the same treatment done in America. This is especially helpful if you do not have dental insurance and need excessive amounts of work.

(Here is the link to that article:http://www.thewanderlustyogi.net/archives/903 )

My husband allowed me to share that he, is indeed a person in this predicament. Ironically, although I am a registered dental hygienist, I am a temporary worker, (making my schedule more flexible for my travels as a travel blogger), which means I do not have dental insurance.  My husband is self-employed and does not have dental insurance either.

We decided  that this may be worth looking into for his dental treatment needs. I did research and talked with a lot people, including my patients, who have had dental work done in Costa Rica and it seemed like a very logical solution.  If we went to Costa Rica to get his dental work done at a fraction of the price, we would not only save money, but would be allowed to visit a beautiful country in Central America as well.  I could share both aspects of this sort of trip with my readers.   A win-win.thewanderlustyogi.net

When I told friends and colleagues of this plan, many expressed that they didn’t think it was a good idea because they didn’t believe the quality of care would be as good as in the USA. I let them know of the research I’ve done and that this is not necessarily the case.  There are many highly skilled dentists in Costa Rica, some even having their schooling done in the United States and that people from all over do these dental tourism trips all the time with great success.

My husband and I weighed it out and thought it was worth the risk. Being in the dental field, I could also share my professional opinion with my readers, friends, family and colleagues, on how the dental health clinics are in Costa Rica, as compared to dental clinics in America. I plan to share our entire experience with others who are seeking to do the same, which from the response and outpouring of messages I’ve received, are countless!

I have since then, been in contact with a dental clinic in San Jose, Costa Rica called Meza Dental (www.mezadentalcare.com), that was highly recommended and has staff, coincidentally that have been educated in the United States, at educational institutions such as UCLA and Johns Hopkins University. Needless to say I was impressed.thewanderlustyogi.net

In addition, to the information I received in my communication with the Director of Patient Relations, Howard Siegler, also noting his extreme professionalism and promptness on responding to questions (even emailing me back on a Sunday night),  I also read many reviews and watched video testimonials of people’s experiences. I checked on accreditation with the Costa Rican dental board. I joined dental forums on discussions of people who have used dentists in San Jose, Costa Rica. I also got a ton of email from locals and others who have used Meza Dental and raved about their customer service, state-of-the-art facilities, standards of care, and their satisfaction in the dental treatment they’ve received.thewanderlustyogi.net

Not that this wasn’t impressive enough, but as an added bonus (and to aid our reassurance and soothe any uneasiness ),  their dental clinic and dentists also have been featured in publications such as, Newsweek: highlighting Dr. Alberto Meza D.D.S.,  for his “Excellence in Dental Implants and Cosmetic Dentistry”,  ABC, CNBC, Discovery Channel, FOX Business, USA TODAY, just to name a few.

thewanderlustyogi.net

We are in communication regarding my husband’s case and are in the process of making a treatment plan and scheduling our visit for next month (January 26,2015-February 2,2015). I also hope to meet him or a staff member,  to be able to discuss the subject of  “dental tourism” for a short interview.

I am really looking forward to this trip, for my husband especially, but also excited to see Costa Rica, since I’ve never been. Now even my son and his girlfriend are joining us.  With this trip,  I hope I can give, not only travel advice, but possibly some great dental advice too?

I’ll be writing a few blog posts as soon as we come back about our experience and will be updating, as much as possible, during our visit, via social media; Facebook, Instagram, YouTubeGoogle +,twitter and snapchat (username:namastemumma).

I also would be glad to answer any questions people may have that I may not cover in my post. Please feel free to email me at strikeaposeyoga@gmail.com or contact me through the blog, any of my social media platforms or even call/text  me at

(603)401-5057.

Wish us luck!

Here are some links written about them:

http://www.patientsbeyondborders.com/hospital/meza-dental-care-clinic

http://www.theneweconomy.com/business/meza-dental-brings-smiles-to-europe

http://www.mnn.com/lifestyle/eco-tourism/blogs/adventures-in-dental-tourism-a-visit-to-costa-ricas-meza-dental-care

 

 

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