Travel Thought Thursday :- Unexpected Discoveries

Unbeknownst to me, my life really took a turn for the better after my live-in boyfriend of 5-years walked out on our relationship. Until it ended, I did not know I was co-dependent. I did not know it was in an unhealthy relationship, that it was a ticking time-bomb.

That was 10 years ago. After hitting what I thought at that time as rock bottom, I met a series of strong, level-minded women and men who helped me to understand, to acknowledge, to shift and to evolve to the newer me – the current Karen.

Throughout all this, alongside the smattering of boyfriends and flings – was the travels I experienced. Some days, actually there are many days, I can say I felt more comfortable traveling solo, surrounded by strangers, in a strange land.

What an oddity – you must think. Continue reading

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Scenery Sunday : Finisterre, Spain

If you are in Spain and want to see a beautiful coastline with history to boast – try visiting Finisterre or “End of the Earth”.

Galicia is a beautiful region. It’s home to the founder of clothing store Zara.

Pilgrims from around the world arrive in Finisterre to complete their walk on the St. James Way.

This is a pivotal location for many people’s lives. It has affected me even though I did not walk the Camino. Continue reading

Travel Thought Thursday :- Gratitude

HAPPY October! Hope your September was as intriguing and fun as mine!

Greetings from Black Sea region of Turkey!

Fall colours on Kackar mountains Ayder Turkey

Fall colours at Ayder, Turkey

I’m sure much has happened to you as have happened to me. I don’t know exactly where to begin but I promise to slowly disclose the happenings of September and how some of it connects to my past lives and past events of this current life.

***

Currently I’m in Ayder, Turkey. My eyes loves the view of the lush green mountains. My ears enjoy hearing the rush of falling waters. My nose and lungs relish in inhaling fresh crisp air. My tongue cherish the taste of local organic honey, hazelnuts and homemade pastries. My skin comes alive when I douse myself with cold water after soaking in 44C thermal waters.

***

Lastly, a great big thanks to all those who kept following my blog and liked my posts while I was on hiatus. I cannot believe how many more people have started following me during the month of September. I’m flattered and surprised. Thank you from the bottom of my heart.

Love you all. Be yourself. Safe travels.

Spiritual Saturday :- Past Lives in Paris Unravels

Where do I begin… In March of 2013, I checked into a hostel at the border town of Foz do Iguacu, Brazil. There in the 4-bed dorm room, I found a book on the shelf of the closet. I picked it up, the title of the book “Sarah’s Key” written by Tatiana de Rosnay. I thought to myself, “Why not give this a read – It’s been ages since you last read a book that’s not a travel guidebook.”

I admit I’m typically a slow reader unless the book intrigues me. This was one of those – I finished the book in 2 days despite the fact that I still found time to visit the Iguazzu falls on the Brazilian side and a local Buddhist Temple. The book tells a story of a Jewish girl who lived in Paris, France. On the 16th of July in 1942, the French police rounded up all the Jews in Paris and sent them to VĂ©lodrome d’Hiver (Vel’ d’Hiv). She had locked her brother inside the secret cupboard in their Parisian apartment to keep him safe, with a promise to return. She became a child of the Vel’ d’Hiv roundup.

No other Holocaust story has struck me like this. I cried painfully as though I was the girl in the story when I finished the book. Even when I visited Auschwitz-Birkenau in 2009, I did not react like this. My heart ached. I felt physical pain. I could not understand why the connection. Continue reading

Spiritual Saturday :- Overcoming the Fear of Water Pt. 2

Over the past 10 years I’ve come to believe and realize that life moves in the form of a spiral. Sometime moving upward / forward. Sometimes moving downward / backward. Sometimes moving just sideways. It never stands still, even though it might seem that way.

The spiral may be tight and intense. The spiral may be easy and fluid. Life lessons pop up along the way and until I have comprehended the various aspects of that life lesson, it will keep surfacing in my life, through different interactions, through different experiences and different circumstances.

With my fear of water, it’s been a lifelong thing as mentioned in this post and this other post.

Continue reading

Travel Thought Thursday :- Overcoming the Fear of Water

When someone thinks of 4 days 3 nights cruise in the Mediterranean off the coast of Turkey, most conjure up dreamy thoughts.

Crisp blue waters, so clear that you can see the small fish skidding past the bottom of the boat. The amazing clear skies at night, lite up by the moon and the million stars in the sky. The sound of waves as the boat cruise along as you lounge on the deck with fellow travelers. Plunging into the deep blue sea for a leisure swim.

Full stop.

Swimming. Open waters. Bottomless. Float – Sink.

When I am a person who recently overcome a fear of water, facing open water is a challenge. If I overthink the situation, I will NOT be amongst the deep blue sea. I would stay on the boat the whole time. Regardless of the peer pressure or self pressure to join the masses!

BLue cruise boat in Turkey

Home for 4 days and 3 nights on the Mediterranean off the coast of Turkey

Continue reading

My first time… Scuba Diving!

Back in 2009, I packed my bags and went to Eastern Australia for 6 weeks. The plan was to get my scuba diving certification at the Great Barrier Reef, visit friends I met while traveling who live in Sydney and Melbourne and fill in the blanks on the go.

I was scared and excited – total mixed bag of emotions, I tell ya!

The KINK => I cannot swim, not really. I am scared of water. I can kinda swim the back stroke but if water splashes onto my face (with goggles ON) – I freak! I have drowned in a swimming pool, during adult swimming lessons, where the water was just deep enough that I cannot touch the bottom. So yes, there’s a slight problem. Reason for fear of water: I drowned to death in a past life – this is a recent discovery. Continue reading