i just got in from a few moments of solitude of sipping wine on my balcony (eeee! i have a balcony!) as the rain fell. it’s dark out, and yet i could still see some of the silhouette of the nearby mountain. beautiful. it’s so good to be surrounded by these ancient, mysterious, lush mountains.

i sat on the balcony because i needed a few moments to just breathe. to stop doing all the crazy stuff i’ve been doing at full speed for the past week. i don’t function like that. i can’t function like that. my body & brain just give out on me. and i become an emotional wreck. at some point i have to slow myself back down. so, my 15 minutes on the porch was a chance to do just that.

and now i’m here. writing at my new desk. making my first greeting to the world from my new little corner. a place that i know will be one of inspiration, rest, and soul-searching. i don’t know how, but i just know it will be. or…. it is. already. and i’m feeling quite touched and at peace right now.

but, it has been a whirlwind lately. let me put it this way: from the moment i landed on US soil, the only luck i have had is the bad kind. and challenge after challenge has been put in my path. however, with every single challenge and every single stroke of bad luck, there has also been a person, or several people, who have surfaced and made everything better. and most of them have been strangers, reminding me why i love the relaxed, carefree, friendly spirit of americans.

with all of the whirlwinded-ness of the past few days, i am exhausted, so i give myself permission to be brief as i share with y’all little snippits of stories. here’s what’s been coming my way

lina was whisked away into an interview room with the US immigration people. (i’ll let her tell her story however she wants, if she wants). anyway, she was gone for about 45 minutes to an hour. for. real. and i was freaking out. worried. and trying to round up 8 pieces of luggage on my own. plus find our cat. long story short, i got the luggage of a cart, dragged some of it, and found the cat. just before i got to zola, all the luggage fell off. all freaking over the place. two very nice men helped me gather everything and one of them went to get zola and brought her to me. then i had an emotional meltdown while waiting to see if lina found where i was. she did find me, and was allowed to stay. so, after holding me a few minutes, we continued our journey to border patrol to declare zola and hopefully not have to explain everything we had packed if they searched our bags.


next up was the car rental and road trip experience. if you know me, you know i loooove road trips. like double love. i had to leave zola & my love in one place and find my way to another place on the airport grounds to get the car. of course the trains were broken and it was 103 F/35 C outside. the car rental place would not take my debit card. they wanted a credit. i had lina’s, but they wouldn’t let me use it. then, after a while, they ok’d me and i found myself realizing that now i had to drive back to my love and find my way through the airport by car. i succeeded. we loaded up, and headed out of dodge!



the drive through new jersey & pennsylvania was gorgeous. we pumped up the music and enjoyed life a little. then i started to get tired. like majorly. eventually, after much debate, we decided to spend the night someone instead of driving and arriving at 3-4am. the first place didn’t allow cats. the second did. so, we plopped into bed and i zonked out. totally spent. 


friday morning (the day after our flight & planned arrival) we woke at 5am and headed out to the car to get on the road again. luckily no one stole all of our luggage that we left in the car overnight. whew. i drove and drove and drove. and felt nauseous. and weak. and not anything like myself. i wondered how it could have gone from such amazing-ness to these moments of feeling like i can’t hold anything down or keep my eyes open to drive. but, i fought on. and kept driving.

then we got to north carolina. lina needed to stop at the first rest stop about 1 mile into nc, and, well, let me just say this: as soon as i got into nc, i puked. ugh. 

after the rest stop, we were stopped in traffic for a whole freaking hour. unbelievable. stopped. and i was sick. and it was hot. oh lord, i thought this trip would never end. i began to wonder if our new apartment and life in asheville even existed.

but we did make it! and we jumped right in by getting new phones, a tv, and freaking out when we saw the amazing-ness of our apartment.

i still felt like crap and i so wanted to soak up every single second of our first day in asheville, instead of almost fainting in the electronics store. i was really irritated with myself, but i knew that my body was talking to me. my body and my mind were trying to catch up to all that was happening. reality was too much for me to soak in. so, i nearly crashed…. but, i didn’t. instead, i slept. and i woke on saturday refreshed and feeling like myself, ready to tackle the next day of gathering & shopping.

then, came sunday. IKEA day. i thought everything’d be fine. we had a plan. but, that plan fell right on through, and we were left with a shitload of ikea furniture and boxes (really heavy stuff) and no where to go. we still needed to buy things, but we couldn’t leave our purchases anywhere. they wouldn’t let us. and it didn’t fit into the jeep. and our second vehicle couldn’t make it to help us out now.

so, we took the bull by the horns and i googled rental trailers and got myself a trailer hitched to the back of the jeep. gassed that baby up in the middle of the ghetto, hoping i wouldn’t be shot, and went to pick up lina & the furniture. of course, when we were ready to leave, there was a serious lightening storm that lasted about 45 minutes. and it was getting dark. and we didn’t have brake lights on this trailer. and we had to drive 2 hours. and it would be illegal.


needless to say, after shopping, buying, hauling, moving, lifting, carrying, driving, and solving every problem that came our way together, i have come to the conclusion, that i can do anything. i can face any single challenge that stares me in the face. and if i have lina with me, then i can tackle absolutely anything for sure.

so, today, i begged to stay home. and we did. though we have been busy non-stop since about 7am. putting together all of that furniture. but, it’s done…. thanks to my love. and to my brother & my parents for their help at different times today. we’re all set. furniture is in place, and now the fun decorating awaits.

but, before i get ahead of myself, i thought i’d show you the before photos i took… to give you a little taste of what’s to come…

     DSC_0346 DSC_0350 DSC_0351 DSC_0354 DSC_0355 DSC_0358 DSC_0361 DSC_0364  DSC_0339

thanks for sharing the journey with me, friends. now, i’m gonna make my way back out to my balcony for a few minutes of nighttime meditation, courtesy of the amazing full moon hanging in the sky directly over my balcony.

wishing you adventures and sunshine. love & peace.