November 7, 2014: Somewhere In Heaven:)

IMG_1503It’s been a full, nourishing time at the farm.  We continue to work on the new kitchen, renovated dining hall, and have begun to turn our attention to further refinements in preparation for guests and groups to come.  More pics of our farm adventures soon!  My family and I left the farm yesterday to drive to an utterly sublime, out-of-this-world lovely hotel at the ocean.  I’ve been in touch with the manager regarding the possibility of collaborating with our eco-friendly retreats.  In my mind, I can visualize hosting retreats that would include several days immersed in the mystical land of our rainforest farm, followed by several days surrounded by the ocean.  The combination would give our guests the utmost experience of the natural beauty that this  country has to offer.  I have a really good feeling about the place we are now sitting in.  It turned out – synchronicity! – the owner of the hotel knows Katiuska and Jose very well.  She has attended seminars with them in the past, and has hosted them at her hotel.  Good sign:)  I’m meeting with her niece tomorrow morning, who now manages the property.  I will tell you all about our talk and if it looks possible that they will join our EcoRetreatsDR collection.  In the pic above, you see Sofia this morning, swinging on a hammock with the villa in the background.  The grounds remind me of an old Hawaiian plantation style villa.  Love it.

IMG_1479Here is the on-site restaurant that looks out onto the gardens and ocean.  We were served fresh papaya, pineapple, banana and made to order omelettes, with fresh baked breads.

IMG_1509It’s slightly cloudy this morning so I’ll have to take some more pics, but this is where I am sitting right now:  On a lounge chair surrounded by the palm studded garden that is sprinkled with tropical plants, lava rock, and a small island just off shore to complete the tropical scene.  It’s balmy…the waves are singing along with the soft brushing sounds of the palm fronds above me.  Oh, need I say it :  Peaceful!

On our drive here yesterday, I was touched by the sense I’ve had here in the Dominican Republic many times already:  We are in a different TIME zone, literally.  A time that doesn’t exist many places anymore:  The slower pace of life, hand to mouth connection to the land and sea, that one’s life revolves around plants and animals, air and water.

When we arrived last night, we headed back down the road just a bit to have dinner at a place we saw on the way in.  I will post pics!  We met the owner, GrisGris (I think is her name?), she was our hostess and waitress, and likely our chef.  Charming, wide open smiling face.  The menu was confusing so we just asked her to prepare what she would like for us, and she said she would.

As we sat at our outdoor table, enjoying the view of thatched huts and – YES – a double thick rainbow! – GrisGris walked out from the back after bringing us a beer and water, jumped on a quad and revved up the engine and raced away!  We were like, “Oh…?..maybe her shift ended…hmm, i wonder who’s serving us dinner?”  But about 5 minutes later, she came racing back, carrying a plastic bag with two fresh fish that soon became a delicious, garlicky veggie sauced dinner on our plates! Her bull mastiff dog wandered around the street outside as we ate, and she leaned up against a pole and chatted with us for a while as we devoured the freshest fish I’ve ever eaten.  What a wonder she is, love her!

Okay, the girls are floating around in the pool behind me:  Time to play with my kitten loves.  But just had to catch up a little bit with you and let you know what’s going on.  To everyone, I hope we are surrounded by peace, love, happiness, health, safety and goodness, and that it spreads out from all of us like a rainbow, to everyone. xoxo

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