To My Dear Twenty-Five,
Just over a month ago, I took an early morning flight from Orlando into San Jose. I boarded another plane about the size of a mini van and flew across Costa Rica to land on an asphalt drive in Tambor, from there, it was a dusty, bumpy van ride 45 minutes up into the hills above Montezuma, and then there it was: Anamaya.
One of my favorite things about Anamaya is that it used to be a private residence. It was owned by Geoffrey who had the foresight, or dare I say, generosity to convert the space to a wellness resort. However, outside of the personal service and beautiful food, this place feels so little like a resort; it feels like home.
When remembering Anamaya the word picturesque seems too small. Here, beauty assaults the senses in so many ways, and everywhere I turned there seemed to be another beautiful photograph waiting to be captured. There is the insane Yoga Deck where you practice looking out at the Pacific, the infinity pool that reflects the never ending blue sky, even the rooms, each one different, could keep you snapping for days.
However, throughout my stay, I tried to capture one specific shot - the main house just before a meal. For me, my favorite part of every day at Anamaya was when 25 new friends would collect around the long tables to discuss their plans for the day or laugh about what adventures they had just survived.
I loved the smell of delicious food being prepared, the sounds of dishes in the kitchen, mixed with constant laughter and chatter. I was never able to get this shot (or one that satisfied me) because it always fell short. There is a certain vibration, a frequency that cannot be pinpointed that comes from a room filled with a group of people who are sharing themselves openly, honestly and with love.
Love. I think we all knew in the first few hours that we were in store for something beyond our initial expectations. That the week was not going to be filled with quiet solitude, but instead, spent with a beautiful spectrum of souls, where laughter was not in short supply and connections were instantaneous.
Seema asked the first night, “How do I bottle this, how do I take it home with me?” And now that comment stays with me, how does it keep going?
Is it maintaining a regime of yoga a few times a week? Is it committing to that non-meat, dairy, coffee, or gluten diet you’ve been meaning to try? Is it going to bed at 9:30pm every night?
Actually, that last one might help me be a better person….
Instead I think you take it home with you by protecting the openness that connected you to this place and these people. I left Costa Rica with an incredible sense of fullness.
Full of new experiences.
Full of new ideas.
Full of youth and creativity.
Full of stories and jokes.
A Full Heart and a Full Mind.
For me "bottling it" is easy because I'm filled up to the brim. I hope to take home and sustain this sense of contentment and completeness, and I wish the same for you, my lovely, hilarious, wonderful 25. Thank you for EVERYTHING.
~Lightness and Love