Camp for Grownups


I could smell that someone was burning a small wood fire in the distance.  There was a breeze flowing through the sparse adobe rooms where Mark and I were taking a Reiki class.  I have had a good bit of experience with Reiki through a practitioner who was a dear friend of mine in Iowa City.  Mark had one healing experience with Reiki through my same dear friend when we traveled to Iowa City earlier this year.  Yet here we were, both learning about how Reiki works and how to harness the energy to find peace and balance and healing through tuning in to the right energy frequency (I know, that’s over-simplifying it!!).  Oh sure, we could learn this stuff in the States but it just isn’t the same.  We are drawn to this special place by its energy.  We are in a place where there are like-minded people.   It’s the natural thing to do here.  But that’s not to say we don’t think differently —  we may have different life philosophies, political ideals, and we call the creative life force by different names.  But Reiki is a way to find emotional and spiritual health and well-being from a beautiful soul.

View from land we are considering....

Mark and I have joined the local choir.  It is an a capella group which sings and performs songs in several languages — a true international bent — with hopes of expanding to include local Ecuadorians.  Our next performance will be in the local church in hopes that we can attract Ecuadorian people to the choir.  There is a natural unspoken divide between locals and foreigners here, largely due to the language barrier.  But the gringos are working on it.  It’s all understandable and both sides are working to overcome the barriers.  By and large, everyone you meet has a smile for you and a kind word, even if you don’t know what it means.

She really liked my chocolate cake batter!

So . . . .

. . . .

Vilcabamba is kind of like camp for grownups.  We all have our favorite spot on the square in downtown Vilcabamba where we meet up with friends for a juice smoothie, we go to choir, we learn a new language, we practice Reiki, we eat incredibly delicious food in awe-inspiring places, we listen to live music, make art, sleep when we want, cook in our group kitchens, and push a bunch of tables together and eat meals made from whatever’s in the fridge with our friends.

Taking the 6:20 burro home from work

Gotta run.  We’re off to a raw food potluck.  I’m taking some of my almost-famous salsa.   What’s that?  You say you haven’t had it yet?  C’mon down to Vilcabamba and I’ll make you a fresh batch!



About Debbie

I am engaged to Mark Howle, a wonderful man native to Mississippi (USA). We share an incredible number of common beliefs and philosophies. We'll act on our common convictions as we go to the Sacred Valley of Longevity in Vilcabamba, Ecuador in South America. We'll get married this fall. Between us, we have six kids ranging in age from 17 to 25. There is nothing more important to us than our kids: Austin, Caitlin, Hollie, Noah, Calvin, and Sam. Stay tuned. It promises to be a great ride!

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