Thursday, 11 January 2018

Travel, Workshops, Inspiration and Research

Have you ever wanted to get out of a funk, put an idea out there that was something you haven't done before and another person jumped on board to join you?  As I type this, I realize I have indeed done exactly that but forgot. 

This time I was wanting some new inspiration for spiritual workshops and the guinea pig would be Mike Dooley's Soulapolooza in Florida.  He's most well know for TUT, Notes from the Universe that I have received everyday for years.
I told my friend Linda and she turned my unformed idea into a dream, complete with a ticket with dubious connections and the event pass purchased. 
Holy cow, what on earth had I signed up for November past? I know, like the people who have kids first then marry, I travel, celebrate the months of Christmas then write. 

Imagine an entire weekend with my favourite hobby and an unlimited number of like minded people in the bikini heat of Florida.  I would be totally immersed and I couldn't imagine anything more fun... and this is where the story goes downhill as most of my stories do derail.
I got a cold before departure; yes it was the worst sniffles the doctors had ever seen.   They weren't sure if I'd live or die or what to name my plague after AND I had a bad neck issue so for four days plus 2 months after I couldn't look left or right, up or down.   I was coma-like and in great pain despite the continuous pre-departure massages from my masochistic masseuse.  Do you know how much you process with orifices leaking and unable to turn left or right?  Pretty much nothing!!!
I learned I am not a big conference person and I really wish I had known this before I left.  The signs were there, like me not wanting to talk in line at the bank  to draw attention to myself and not wanting to sing to kids in public places.  I don't like people watching me bowl or play pool either.  Maybe if I had not been ill, I would  have loved the constant rah rah session and goofy cheers and the adoration for the cause but alas, as a Typhoid Mary, it just irritated me, all those people having fun with me feeling this way.  It was almost like they didn't even care.  

I was told I didn't have to attend everything though if I didn't want to- I mean who is going to enforce one's attendance?  They already had my money so whether I showed up or not was of no consequence to them so I bailed and went to the beach.  I had left a chilly winter in Ottawa to be in balmy hot and sunny Florida; Clearwater to be exact, and I had lots of sunscreen which was totally unnecessary. 

Before I continue, I feel obligated to tell you, I remember cold and chilly but I'll be damned if I can find any cold and chilly pics.  Honestly, it was chilly but I was determined to get those money shots of me roasting in the sun...then putting my coat back on. Maybe the coat was in the evening- I dunno.  Maybe I was jacked up on cold medicine.

 Florida unfortunately, did not get the memo that they were supposed to be warm as seen by the lack of people sunbathing.  Of course it was warmer than Canada but I had to wear a coat.  A coat!!!!! It wasn't warm enough for a bathing suit but if I'm honest, I was too sick and crabby to enjoy it anyway.  It might as well have been a tornado because that is probably the only thing I would have been happy with.  Any of you who have followed my travels throughout the years would remember that I tend to remember the morbid and it takes me awhile, ok years to look back fondly on my trips.  I have no idea why I'm like that but my next reverie on the Riverboat cruise will confirm this 100%.  

I did get to go to two events that I may one day turn into  workshops.  Soulapolooza is high on "like attracts like", visualisation, and realizing that your thoughts become things so you should not think about things you don't want to manifest. They hosted two events, one called a Heaven on Earth party and Come as Your Future Selfie.   
Ladies in white rippin' up the impromptu dance floor.

The Heaven on Earth party had us all dressed in white, reminiscent of the Ayuawaska party I went to in Costa Rica years ago but there would be no hallucinations this time round.  We played some interpersonal ice breaker games, lit some candles and while I had been told by my team leader that there would only be light food, and I should definitely eat supper before, there was copious amounts of food like what I would picture a buffet in heaven would look like.  I was so sad (hmmm, lets be honest- bitchy as hell) and pre-stuffed like the proverbial turkey. 
I have absolutely NO idea what we were doing with the candles.
 It had been a long day so we cut out early before the booze mixer and went to hot tub (the verb) and watch the stars as we sat on the beach. In retrospect, that does sound like a lovely night. Found out that in the past, the hotel used to be on the beach but someone decided to do some blocks and it was now quite a distance to see the water, so much so that they now had a shuttle.
I'm standing half way between the hotel and beach water.  The little dots in the distance are people standing by the water.

Linda was great at this visualization and play acting.  She was the
perfect traveling companion.  Wish she could have said the same
about me.
It was fun to figure out what I was inspired to be in the Come as your Future Selfie party and visualize every detail of it and talk like it had already happened and I was on the best seller list.  I realized my dream is to be a writer.  Do you know what is salt peter to this dream.... realizing that every other person at the conference                                                                     wants to be a writer as well. 

While looking back at the pictures, I realize I must be a very gifted photographer 'cause I look like I was having fun in the sun. 
My favourite time was when the "annoying" guitar singer was playing all my favourite folk music.  I was in heaven altho our working group a few feet away was having difficulty hearing ourselves think.  I was ready to kick our group out so I could bask in the tunes I never get to hear.

Quite honestly, for this conference, I had a plan to find myself, get some sun and start doing yoga daily, (never happened) and get the most out of this conference.  

Yoga never happened every morning.

Feel blessed to have listened to this gifted singer.

I guess some good did come out of this weekend but I still hold that I am not a big conference person.  In retrospect, I realize that I had attended another conference once before to empower women down at Lilydale NY and it was very memorable.  It was a smaller group, more intimate and impacted me greatly.  Apparently small group conferences are my thang.

I can use some of this stuff.  We were given a workbook, Love Your Life in 30 Days.  Upon closer look, I realized I had already done it on my own long before the trip.  Aw well, can't hurt to do it again, can it and I'm sure some things have changed in my life.  Last time I did a vision board, I half finished it and forgot about it.  6 months later, I decided I was going to do a vision board (damn my memory) and it was my sister who reminded me I already had one started.  Told her she was crazy, found it half finished, apologized profusely and realized, almost everything had come true on the board I didn't even know I had.  Maybe there is something to all this cheer leading rah rah sis boom bah "I can do it" routine that I can use at Spoiled Rotten B&B. (BTW, how do you like the new logo?)

So bottom line, I should not pay to attend large conferences no matter what,even though it sounds glamorous and energizing.  I need to look for local, small group workshops to market my place there as these are the peeps I want to rent my space and let me be a fly on the wall. So all you like minded business people, just rent the darn place for your workshop or come to one of my Paint Nights already.  Good space, better food and best price and thanks for coming out.
Forgot I took this so belated Merry Christmas.

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