Friday, April 16, 2010

Maha India!!

in the hippy hills of Rishikesh...made famous the Beatles journey over here years ago!
Its gorgeous! Staying at the lovely Hotel the foothills of the Hymalays! Beautiful blue pool, trees blowing in the breeze and nice cute little Indian boys at my beck and call. I am learning hindi from them and they are learning english from me. I already taught them Boomer Sooner, Bow Howdy and I love America's Gypsy!

After a 12 hour bus ride from Delhi to Haridwar...where a woman through a rock at our van and broke the whole were were stranded in the streets while our bus driver and guide argued with the people in the streets...a nice way to start the trip. But once we landed in of the holiest cities in India...we were in bliss! The Kumbha Mela...look that up! over 10 million indians were there and probably 100 westeners. it was wild! I  was blessed by holy men and women on floats on their way to bathe in the Ganga ...the holy ganges river. It was like combining the Gay Pride Parade with Texas vs OU adding a Rolling Stones concert circa 1975 then maybe a Yankee's world series game but all along a holy river tinted with green light, and thousands of temples where the holiest men and women sit and chant to lord krishna, vishnu, and all the other beautiful vedic dieties! then millions of pilgrims from all over dressed in their finest tribal clothes, huge turbons of reds and yellows, flowing saris of greens and gold and almost all with no shoes, bags balancing on their head and smiles~ for they are heading to their favorite place...the Ganga!

We bathed in it to and it was so special. on the day we bathed it is supposedly the most holy of all days when lord vishnu passed the city having beaten the demons and he dropped holy necter-amrit- in the river. it was sooo holy! and I was dressed all in white with my head covered and people thought I was a saint.
Then the bands came by and i started to dance a little and then out of a HUGE crowd a woman decked out in INdian garb came and pulled me in with her...into the middle of the procession with thousands of people around clapping and waving their hands in the air- Bangra style! I kicked off my shoes and started to dance the bangra with a little belly dance...but since this is a holy festival...i did not move my hips as much as I would normally. i kept the Yalla Yalla for later.

every woman came up to me and hugged me and i was in constant pranam- which is my hands in front of my heart for NAMASTE- to everyone and everyone to me. THey saw ME for who I am and all my radiance within! It was like nothing I had ever experienced bc they were doing this to ME...specifially me...for they do not do this to everyone...or really, anyone.
As my yoga teacher Mark Whitwell said with tears in his eyes...they see your true Shakti- which is like angelic ignighting force of life- that comes out and spreads to ALL! WOW
 but it was over 100 degrees- and I was in a hut with 5 other women.
sooo dusty, so louds...constant horns and whistles
but also muddled with the sounds of hari krishna, gopala and Hari Hari Maha Dev!
it was dirty....
people shitting anywhere they please...but that is how they do it here...its survival, its animalist and not that big of a deal.
food has been heavy and sparce
we eat a breakfast and then huge dinner of breads and spicey lentils...true indian food bc we are in dry cities- no meat and no alchohol- but still its so good....tasty....and satisfying. Its not about the food here...its about the Bhav!
today i am in the hotel which is so nice and had a fuill body ayrvedic massage for only 20 dollars. its so cheap here- I made friends with Geeta, who gave me the massage and she is taking me to get henna done!
I was almost attacked by monkeys and am doing constat yoga and kirtan with Shyam Das.

india is truely in my heart and i am so glad i am here - finally! my soul has been yearning for it for years and many centuries!
I am learning so much about my SELF< my path, my purpose my power and am so gratefull for it all
Now I know that America's Gypsy is truely blessed and will truely bless others! I have never been more confident about it manifesting into its highest place in our world! Thank you all for being in my life and living my life with me bc you are right here in my India!
Om Namah Shivaya

Saturday, April 10, 2010

First Day in India

First of all, I love Air India! I had the whole row to I could stretch out and jam to Bollywood music and movies the whole time....which I did. Then 3 meals of delicious vegetarian indian food and hot puri's...delish!
Then I was picked up in Delhi by Malik Muhammad, a friend of a friend who is from Kashmir. He was a fabulous tour guide...showing me the ins and outs of Delhi in a rickshaw. Dusty flying everywhere going along with the sounds of Mulsim Minarets, Hare Krishna temples and singing Sikh's and constantly being interrupted by the sounds of horns. In India you must honk...on the back of cars it says HORN PLEASE! I got used to it after a while and having been to Delhi...Ramses BLVD in Cairo is NOTHING compared to this! We finished the night at the Shrine ofNizamuddin Auliya- the famous Sufi Saint.
The area of Delhi is called Nizamuddin and is mostly muslims. Tiny little streets filled with buggies, carsts of hot food, qur'ans, rose petals, men in white kaftans and only a few women fully covered. We walked up to the shrine and I made a wish. Malik ripped off a piece of my shawl and tied it inside the shrine (bc i could not go in being a woman). If my wish comes true then I must return and donate money to the poor...which I will happily do.
Now off to Rishikesh and then 3 days camping at the Kumbha Mela in Haridwar!
Om Shanti and yalla yalla yee ha! 

Friday, April 2, 2010

Principles of Yoga

I am about to voyage onto my first Yoga retreat in India! I am so very thrilled but also a little bit afraid...but as they say, fear is just  masking the feeling of excitement!

On my yoga retreat...I will not only be partaking in the Asanas of yoga (the movements that we know as vinayas and 'poses') but also the principles of yoga. 

There are four principle forms of Yoga :

Karma Yoga - Uniting with the Supreme Self through "Work"
Gyana Yoga - Uniting with the Supreme Self through "Knowledge"
Bhakti Yoga - Uniting with the Supreme Self through "Devotion"
Raja Yoga - Uniting with the Supreme Self through "Psychic Control"
"Patanjali" was the first Philosopher and Teacher who made "Yoga" a proper scientific discipline. Yoga is being practiced in India since the last 5000 Years. The "Ashtanga Yoga" of Patanjali consists of Eight Limbs with the help of which, one can attain Realization.

The Eight Limbs are:

  • Yama (Restrain)
  • Niyama (Self Discipline)
  • Asana (Posture)
  • Pranayama (Breathing exercises for the Lungs)
  • Pratyahara (Withdrawal)
  • Dharana (Concentration)
  • Dyana (Contemplation)
  • Samadhi (Transcendence)                  I am sure this will be a wonderful journey to India! I will have heaps and heaps of stories and footage upon my return! I am so excited to share it with everyone! Namaste!

Don't DEET

As I am preparing for my trip to India, one of the most important concerns is Malaria from Mosquitoes.
And everyone keeps telling me, "Take alot of insect repellant"!
So, as a conscious traveler, I went to Paragon, the top sporting/outdoor goods store in NYC and bought heavy duty insect repellent that was 100% DEET.

After a few hours I was as the local farmers market buying my organic produce and then purchasing homeopathic natural remedies for common aliements such as diarrhea instead of chemically-laden pepto-bismol with its strange ingredients and bright pink color that was not created from the crushing of cherries...more from red food coloring.

Going along with my day I had an Ah HA! moment! Wait a minute!!! What the heck is DEET??
and if I am going to be spraying it directly onto every inch of my skin for 3 weeks, I sure as hell better know what it is!

Care to find out? Voila:

"DEET is a registered pesticide. DEET is short for N,N-diethyl-m-toluamide (also known as N,N-diethyl-3-methylbenzamide). It is a member of the toluene chemical family. Toluene is an organic solvent used in rubber and plastic cements and paint removers. DEET is absorbed through the skin and passes into the blood. The Medical Sciences Bulletin, published by Pharmaceutical Information Associates Ltd. reports, "Up to 56% of DEET applied topically penetrates intact human skin and 17% is absorbed into the bloodstream." Blood concentrations of about 3 mg per litre have been reported several hours after DEET repellent was applied to skin in the
prescribed fashion. DEET is also absorbed by the gut.
The most serious concerns about DEET are its effects on the central nervous
system. Dr. Mohammed Abou-Donia of Duke University studied lab animals'
performance of neuro-behavioural tasks requiring muscle co-ordination. He found that lab animals exposed to the equivalent of average human doses of DEET performed far worse than untreated animals. Abou-Donia also found that combined exposure to DEET and permethrin, a mosquito spray ingredient, can lead to motor deficits and learning and memory dysfunction." - from


Fatalities Due to Dermal Exposures to DEET
From 1961 to 2002, eight deaths were reported related to DEET exposure. Three of these deaths resulted from deliberate ingestion of DEET (Tenenbein 1987) (see above). Two deaths were reported in adults following dermal exposure to DEET (Bell et al. 2002). The remaining three cases were all female children, with ages of 17 months, 5 years, and 6 years (Zadikoff 1979; Osimitz and Murphy 1997). All three children had been described as having "heavy, "frequent" or "nightly" applications of DEET. The 6-year-old had congenital ornithine carbamoyl transferase (OCT) deficiency, a potential lethal hyperammonemic condition, which may have contributed to her death. DEET did not inhibit human OCT in vitro (Rej et al. 1990): - from

Deet also causes; Reproductive/Developmental Effects, Dangerous Case Reports of Children's Exposures, seizures and skin rashes. There is also some evidence that extensive, long-term exposure to DEET is associated with higher rates of insomnia, mood disorders and impaired cognitive function.and Psychological Effects in Adults.

Its a Poison People ! 

Skin Absorbs 60% of Products Used Topically - Natural or Chemical...
which then goes directly to your blood stream.
Is it worth it to shower yourself in chemicals?
I say no!
There are ALWAYS natural alternatives out there.

Natural Insect Repellents with 0% Deet:

Flixx Natural Insect Repellent Spray

Bite Blocker All Natural Insect Repellent Herbal Wipes  

Quantum BuzzAway 6 oz -Natural Mosquito Repellent

Kiss My Face Swy Flotter, Natural Tick & Insect Repellent, 4 fl oz

Jason Natural Quit Bugging Me Natural Insect Repellant Lotion ...

 Try to avoid scented lotions, perfumes and fabric softeners bc Bugs like to nibble on skin tainted with scents! instead use natural oils :)

Natural Oils to keep BUGS AWAY:

  • Cedarwood oil
  • Tea tree oil
  • Geranium oil
  • Rosemary oil
  • Lemongrass oil
  • Citronella oil
  • Eucalyptus oil
  • Cinnamon oil
Always know what you are buying, eating, and promoting!
Read the Labels and live and healthy, happy Gypsy life!