Committing to a New Journey

Check out my Tedx Talk on the Taboos of Poo at Gettysburg College in 2013

This isn’t the first time I’ve packed my life into one backpack and headed to a new destination with no plan. Instead of a plan, I carry a longing to discover, learn, and be surprised. Nothing concrete, everything malleable — easily shaped into something new and formerly unknown.

I did this the first time in 2010 after graduating from college. While studying abroad in Bolivia I learned about the 2000 Water War in Cochabamba. I became passionate finding solutions to the global water, sanitation, and hygiene crisis, and applied to jobs and internships through After a handful of offers, I decided to try my luck in Guatemala with an organization building rainwater catchment tanks. Within the first few weeks I realized the fit wasn’t right. However, through that experience I was introduced to a water organization with more experience and was offered a job.

Because of my eagerness to learn, I absorbed all information I could about basic engineering and construction management. I connected with the Peace Corps in Guatemala where I trained and advised volunteers on appropriate technology and practices.

The series of experiences that led to a successful and productive two years in Guatemala reminds me of Ralph Waldo Emerson quote:

Do not follow where the path made lead. Go instead where there is no path and leave a trail.

Each one of us is a unique individual and no matter our age or experiences, there is always a new trail to forge. Instead of weighing pros and cons of an opportunity, I ask myself if I am ready for a new commitment, journey, and reality that only I can create. if the answer is yes, then I go.

Working with the director of Agua Para La Salud, Lynn Roberts. He later provided me with my second job in Guatemala and became a mentor and friend.

Working with the director of Agua Para La Salud, Lynn Roberts. He later provided me with my second job in Guatemala and became a mentor and friend.

Yoga = Joining together

Fear. We learn a lot about it in our yoga practices.  And then because of our practice we realize how it manifests in our lives.

Sometimes what I most fear is attempting what I know can be done.

Recently, my fear was gathering people to practice. How do I get a group of yogis together in a city where I´m only passing through? I had an idea from day one, but it took me nearly two months to overcome the fear of failure to give it a try.


Couchsurfing has been my travel companion since 2007. It now has a function that allows users to create events and gather people together. Arriving in Madrid with language confidence and more time for social media, I created the event. To my surprise, I taught two classes with fourteen students in each on my birthday weekend!


The practices in the park were beautiful because they brought together people from all corners of the world: Bolivia, Malaysia, France, Spain, Turkey, Ireland, Germany, Suriname…the list continues.

We all practice yoga for various reasons. For me, yoga gives me a sense of peace and calmness. I became a teacher to share this tranquility with others and ideally, globally. By bringing cultures together to share in a practice of the mind, body, and breath is by one of the many definitions of yoga or “joining together.”  I´m so grateful to have replaced a fear with a stunning, global yoga community in Madrid.