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@thewomanwanderer

3/3 on Self-Reliance . Rather, be prepared. Be prepared to help yourself, and - if ever necessary - save yourself, because it may be that no one else can. Be prepared, both literally and metaphysically, which in many ways, is rather easily observed and estimated both inwardly and outwardly. . This is the aura I exude when I travel alone - regardless the country, regardless the environment - it is a confidence largely borne of preparedness. It is a broadcast that I belong here on my own, wherever that here may be. And that signaling envelops me, sometimes as I am acutely aware, isolating me in ways I must also be conscious of balancing. . This is how I prepare myself to know what to do when I don't know want to do. And I try to never hold my breath. . There is no question that being mentally prepared is most important. However, as a bonus, being physically prepared also means - you are not generally hungry or thirsty, you are warm(er) and often dry(er) than your compatriots and much less likely to be sunburnt, covered in insect bites, and have few(er), less catastrophic blisters (or have more bandaids), and maybe you can even set broken bones and otherwise stay calm enough to improve your chances of survival. Definitely no promises on being more clean, but maybe sometimes you're the only one with one more pair of dry socks to sleep in. . Detours, changed-or-cancelled plans, and accidents across the spectrum from minuscule to monumentally catastrophic - are guaranteed, I just hope to have a spare pair of socks and some water in the meantime. ___ #thewomanwanderer #jungle #hilltop #tropical #rainforest #landscape #nature #earth #reflection #write #hike #explore #travel #travelphotography #travelphoto #travelpic #travelgram #naturephotography #photography #livelifeoutside #photooftheday #picoftheday #poemoftheday #Arenal #CostaRica #nomad #wanderlust #selfreliance #cleansocks at San José, Costa Rica

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@thewomanwanderer

2/3 on Self-Reliance . There are powerful myths, stories, rituals, and guidelines that inform how I consciously (and unconsciously) behave - to be aware of, to control and deploy where I may, occasionally to suppress and others to simply eliminate - all that must operate cross culturally, and thus adaptively. I often bend but rarely break my own studied framework on how I navigate these unknown human landscapes. This is a persona, intersections of myself at endless crossroads of human interaction predicated on constantly shifting input. I could write a book on this, and I may. . In this persona, people I meet often feel inclined to remark on my safety. I understand this, my independent feminine presence is an anomaly, particularly as I venture outward from traditional spheres of comfort. Yet it is especially foreign women who attempt to commune with me by offering 'intuition' as their parallel framework for safety. I refuse to perpetuate this particular myth. Intuition is not enough. . Intuition is always powerful, but particularly for a solo woman in a foreign environment, it is never enough. If and when your intuition rears, what then? It is sure to be reactive. ___ #thewomanwanderer #jungle #volcano #tropical #rainforest #landscape #nature #earth #intuition #reflection #write #hike #explore #solotravel #travel #travelphotography #travelphoto #travelpic #travelgram #naturephotography #photography #livelifeoutside #photooftheday #picoftheday #Arenal #CostaRica #nomad #wanderlust #selfreliance at Volcán Arenal, Alajuela, Costa Rica

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@thewomanwanderer

1/3 on Self-Reliance . I've been traveling the world for nearly 3 decades now, a lifestyle that has naturally evolved into traveling internationally as an unaccompanied woman. People of all backgrounds and agendas often ask how I do what I do, often an overt or veiled inquiry regarding my safety and security, both real and perceived. . It's true that I get a lot of attention, and yes, more so from men than women; but more so because men are my autonomous peers when I am out exploring the world - they have more liberty to meet me, more authority to observe and assess me, more agency to interact with me however they so choose. And in many ways, both innate and learned, I exhibit and establish myself as one who belongs, yet, my foreignness is a pre-requisite. I am an entity considered Other, most often a curiosity without claim. ___ #thewomanwanderer #jungle #waterfall #tropical #rainforest #landscape #nature #earth #reflection #muse #write #hike #explore #solotravel #travel #travelphotography #travelphoto #travelpic #travelgram #naturephotography #photography #livelifeoutside #lifestyle #photooftheday #picoftheday #Arenal #CostaRica #nomad #wanderlust #selfreliance at La Fortuna, Alajuela, Costa Rica

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@thewomanwanderer

. Rinse 1x daily in water. Repeat until light-hearted. Not recommended for those afraid of letting go. . Please consider the environment throughout your life. Karma, much like misery and environmental destruction, is a bitch. ____ #thewomanwanderer #portrait #ocean #sea #savetheplanet #bikini #islandlife #boatlife #swim #escape #explore #adventure #travel #travelphotography #travelphoto #travelpic #travelgram #picoftheday #photooftheday #islamorada #keys #florida #nomad #wanderlust #karma #rinse #repeat at Islamorada, Florida

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@travel.world.ok

#Repost @thewomanwanderer But the old man always thought of her as feminine and as something that gave or withheld great favours, and if she did wild or wicked things it was because she could not help them. The moon affects her as it does a woman, he thought. - Old Man and the Sea ____ #thewomanwanderer #mer #portrait #islandlife #oceanside #boat #explore #adventure #travel #travelphotography #travelphoto #travelpic #photooftheday #picoftheday #portraitoftheday #followme #marina #islamorada #floridakeys #keys #florida #laborday #nomad #wanderlust #captain

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@thewomanwanderer

Caught in a jungle lightening storm, and I started thinking about the shaman who are struck by lightening. Not because they try to be struck, but just because it happens. ____ #thewomanwanderer #jungle #lightening #storm #mud #horse #landscape #nature #earth #hike #explore #travel #travelphotography #travelphoto #travelpic #photooftheday #picoftheday #storyoftheday #followme #cuidadperdida #colombia #southamerica #nomad #wanderlust #shaman at Ciudad Perdida, Magdalena, Colombia

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@thewomanwanderer

At 6:10am on the 25th of July 2017, I stood at 14,410ft on Columbia Crest having summitted my first big mountain. I climbed through a dark night, under a young waxing-crescent moon in Leo, into the light of a glorious red-glow-dawn. I climbed strong, to see clearly, to descend safely, to climb again, to see more. . You cannot stay on the summit forever; You have to come down again... so why bother in the first place? Just this: What is above knows what is below, but what is below does not know what is above. One climbs. One sees. One descends. One sees no longer, but one has seen. . As inscribed on the Guide's Memorial at RMI Basecamp ____ #thewomanwanderer #sunrise #summit #portrait #mountains #alpine #mountaineering #expedition #adventure #explore #travel #climb #outdoor @rmiexpeditions #climbmemories #forceofnature #sheexplores #alpinebabes #dreambig #newbeginnings #livelife #photooftheday #portraitoftheday #followme #nationalpark #mtrainier #washington #nomad #wanderlust #strength #RIP at Mount Rainier National Park

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@thewomanwanderer

I observe with odd wonder the human capacity to be consciously - at times, even proudly - unprepared, yet courageously resilient as to the consequence. Imagine what more we could do if we stopped insisting on having an elaborate pre-deployed explanation at the ready for why we "did not". . ____ #thewomanwanderer #jungle #river #snowcapped #mountains #bluesky #distance #landscape #nature #earth #lifestyle #pushyourself #believeinyourself #beprepared #explore #adventure #travel #travelphotography #travelphoto #travelpic #photooftheday #picoftheday #followme #palomino #colombia #sierranevadas #carribean #nomad #wanderlust #courage at Palomino, Colombia

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@thewomanwanderer

The story of flamingos in flight. . Pauola told me the flamingos fly twice a day and twice a day only, at 1130 and 1630 when the flight from Riohacha flies over the sanctuary in route to Santa Marta. Enriquo told me about the only hostel in town, Flamenco Hostel, but that the pin was wrong - that it was actually next to the Police Station. I arrived around midday, vectoring the cab to the station, and - in broken Spanish mime - expressed that I wanted to see the flamingos fly. Hernan called Dario, who arrived by motorbike. Dario explained that it would take at least an hour to reach the flock - because the flamingos grazed at the far side of the lagoon in the afternoon - and that it would cost more for him to take me there - because the wind would be against us, so he'd have to pole back. Neither of had eaten, so I climbed onto the back of his bike and we headed to the beach for a lazy lunch before setting sail under a soft afternoon breeze. After a long while, we arrived at the far side of the lagoon and pulled the boat up to a scrubby shoreline with hundreds of pink flamingos grazing in the distance. And we waited, we ambled, I kept looking up to the sky, no plane, then it was time to go - it would long pole back - I stalled a bit more. Finally, we headed back to the boat - I checked the time for the first time all day: 1625! - I asked if we could stay just a few minutes more. I was hopeful, and he was kind - so we stayed just a few minutes more. At exactly 1630, as he was saying we really should be off, "Escucha!" - I screamed in delight - the plane buzzed suddenly overhead and as if on cue, the birds leapt into the sky. I jumped out onto the bank and ran back into the scrub as they circled wide once, twice, then resettled. Now I was ready to go. I'm not sure whose smile was bigger, his or mine. ____ #thewomanwanderer #pink #flamingo #birds #story #lagoon #landscape #nature #earth #sanctuary #explore #adventure #travel #travelsolo #travelphotography #wildlifephotography #travelphoto #travelgram #picoftheday #photooftheday #followme #camarones #guajira #colombia #caribbean #southamerica #nomad #wanderlust #lucky #thankyou at Los Flamencos Sanctuary

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@thewomanwanderer

At the end of the world is: A big-hearted Israeli kindergarten teacher; An Italian winemaker head-over-heels in love with a German choreographer; Two Belgians with good books; And an American with her pen. ___ #thewomanwanderer #ocean #beach #sun #sunset #story #storyteller #landscape #nature #earth #follow #explore #adventure #travel #travelphotography #travelphoto #travelpic #travelgram #picoftheday #photooftheday #storyoftheday #puntasgallinas #guajira #colombia #caribbean #southamerica #nomad #wanderlust #endoftheworld #multicultural at Punta Gallinas

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@thewomanwanderer

Three laws of La Guajira: In the desert, the wind always prevails. In the desert, the sand compels but the mud still dictates. In the desert, shade is a figment of your imagination - or your salvation. ____ #thewomanwanderer #desert #sun #sky #sand #dune #extreme #landscape #nature #earth #explore #adventure #traveling #solo #travelphotography #travelphoto #travelpic #travelgram #picoftheday #photooftheday #taroa #puntasgallinas #guajira #colombia #caribbean #southamerica #nomad #wanderlust #imagination #salvation at Taroa, La Guajira, Colombia

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@thewomanwanderer

The kids. Every kid in the area has their own toll. Some, the more rambunctious siblings and friends, will be mere 20ft apart. . . They run cordons across the roads - whatever they can manage: rope or cord, old bike chains, pieces of wood - as meager but generally effective roadblocks, paint-scratchingly effective. Some have things to sell: prickly-pear fruit mostly, some with woven bracelets and mochillas, a few are family affairs with buckets of prepared shrimp; but most use it more abstractly: to play, to beseech, to assert authority over the road that is theirs, to be recognized in passing - all consider it a rueful game. More and more relatively wealthy strangers, both foreign and domestic, pass through their neighborhood, thus a 4yr old begins to learn both the limits of power and powerlessness. . . Most often, the children stand-attentive at the toll all-day, or gleefully sprint out from nearby patches of shade, many holding the one end in their tiny hands, eyeing every vehicle as it winds through the single-track dusty roads that crisscross this region of the far desert. Some drivers have patience, others do not - at worst, wimpy cordons are snapped and more aggressive ones detoured around; at best, a hard break and a horn melody breeches the game-of-chicken with a smile from the acquiescent child. They consider it a game, with large dividend. . . The big-hearted Israeli bought 100 water bags, 300cc each, and as many single packets of oreos. Every small hand we passed received one of each. ____ #thewomanwanderer #indigenous #wayuu #boy #child #children #desert #landscape #nature #explore #adventure #travel #travelphotography #travelphoto #travelpic #travelgram #picoftheday #photooftheday #lifestyle #ecotourism #guajira #colombia #caribbean #southamerica #nomad #wanderlust #ridinginthetrunk #power #powerlessness #innocent at La Guajira, Colombia

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@thewomanwanderer

How a solo woman travels in La Guajira: motorbike to autobús to carro to taxi-compartido to 4x4 | courtesy of Jader, cousin of Rainer, to Johan, friend of Rainer, to Rainer. . . [Cómo una mujere solo viaje en la Guajira: moto a autobus a carro a taxi-compartido a 4x4 | cortesía de Jader, primo de Rainer, de Johan, amigo de Rainer, y de Rainer.] . Follow the link for the route highlights. ___ #thewomanwanderer #route #transport #4x4 #desert #sky #mudflat #landscape #nature #explore #adventure #learn #spanish #community #travel #travelphotography #travelphoto #travelpic #travelgram #picoftheday #photooftheday #cabodelaveula #puntasgallinas #guajira #colombia #caribbean #southamerica #nomad #wanderlust #solotravel at La Guajira, Colombia

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@thewomanwanderer

There is no "supposed to be" in bodies. The question is not size or shape or years of age, or even having two of everything, for some do not. But the wild issue is, does this body feel, does it have the right connection to pleasure, to heart, to soul, to the wild? Does it have happiness, joy? Can it in its own way move, dance, jiggle, sway, thrust? Nothing else matters. -- Women Who Run With the Wolves ____ #thewomanwanderer #portrait #move #dance #swing #play #body #lifestyle #patchwork #reddress #longdress #lifestyle #photography #travel #travelgram #photooftheday #picoftheday #portraitoftheday #elpablado #medellin #antoquia #colombia #southamerica #latinamerica #nomad #wanderlust #wild #runswithwolves

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@thewomanwanderer

I dream of white horses and arroz con leche under the sunset of the summer solstice. . . [Yo sueño de los caballos blancos y arroz con leche bajo el atardecer del solsticio de verano.] ____ #thewomanwanderer #summer #sunset #farm #pasture #landscape #explore #adventure #learn #spanish #travel #travelphotography #travelphoto #travelpic #travelgram #photooftheday #picoftheday #santaelena #medellin #antoquia #colombia #southamerica #latinamerica #nomad #wanderlust #summersolstice #arrozconleche at Santa Elena, Antioquia, Colombia

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@thewomanwanderer

She walked to the first station. Then rode the train. She waited at the second station. Then hailed a cab. She waited at the third station. Then caught a bus. She waited at the plaza. Then had lunch. She waited over coffee. Then walked home. It poured all the same. So much harder for the waiting. ____ #thewomanwanderer #summer #rain #lluvia #urban #city #cityscape #publictransportation #adventure #explore #travel #travelphotography #travelphoto #travelpic #travelgram #blackandwhite #photooftheday #picoftheday #barrio #santodomingo #medellin #antoquia #colombia #southamerica #nomad #mood at Mirador Sto Domingo

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@thewomanwanderer

El niño en la camisa rayada azul con los globos coloridos camina a través de la plaza. . . [The boy in the blue striped shirt with colorful balloons walks across the plaza.] ____ #thewomanwanderer #portrait #balloons #spiderman #civic #city #public #urban #explore #adventure #travel #travelphotography #travelphoto #travelpic #travelgram #photooftheday #picoftheday #portraitoftheday #plazabotero #botero #medellin #colombia #southamerica #antoquia #spanish #nomad #wanderlust #streetlife at Plaza Botero y Museo de Antioquia

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@thewomanwanderer

Let me tell you about magic in the universe, and they gathered close. This world vibrates on love, she began, love so profound we may grasp it only in the reflections of the sacred soul that exists within all things. But, if we are open and patient, in those most special moments we may be blessed to behold and be held by the light and shadow cast from the mirror itself. So breathe consciously, she gently commanded, for one may never truly know where these portals will lie until you are close enough to feel your own breath reflected. And with that, they inhaled once more, and she exhaled once more, all close enough to feel it. ____ #thewomanwanderer #magic #portrait #love #light #universe #landofgiants #sequoia #tree #forest #giant #poetry #story #nature #landscape #explore #adventure #travel #travelphotography #travelphoto #travelgram #photooftheday #portraitoftheday #nationalpark #california #ca #nomad #wanderlust #sacred #breathe at Sequoia National Park, California

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@thewomanwanderer

This poem is a part of me, much like the sky that inspires me. ___ Why Is the sky? . What starts the thunder overhead? Who makes the crashing noise? Are the angels falling out of bed? Are they breaking all their toys? . Why does the sun go down so soon? Why do the night-clouds crawl Hungrily up to the new-laid moon And swallow it, shell and all? . If there's a Bear among the stars, As all the people say, Won't he jump over those Pasture-bars And drink up the Milky Way? . Does every star that happens to fall Turn into a fire-fly? Can't it ever get back to Heaven at all? And why Is the sky? . . — Questions at Night by Louis Untermeyer ___ #thewomanwanderer #landofgiants #sequoia #tree #forest #giant #sky #poetry #questions #nature #landscape #photography #explore #adventure #travel #travelphotography #travelphoto #travelpic #travelgram #photooftheday #picoftheday #nationalpark #california #ca #nomad #wanderlust #lookup #perspective at Sequoia National Park, California

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@thewomanwanderer

In memory of Pauline . I went to see Pauline today, except she wasn't there. She hadn't wanted to make it a thing, but I could see that it was. . Four eagerly tiny hands plucked you from a clutch on a fateful Easter weekend over five years ago, and gleefully brought you to us, into the generous fold of a grandmother with a young farm and a big stick. For years you roamed the meadow and the wood's edge to your hearts content, always with clean, dry bedding and fresh running water, ample perches and even swings, and yes, a heat-lamp and a night-light for the cold and dark Appalachian night. As the coop grew, the grandmother with the big stick did her best to protect you from the hawks and the foxes -- so many friends came and went, but you my dear, were a fighter through and through: the sole survivor of not one, but two bear-attacks. . After the first, you were named: Pauline the Survivor; after the second, you were immortalized: Pauline the Warrior. A legend born. . Your golden years passed and one day you went lame. That same fate would have those same gleeful, ever-so-slightly wiser hands, visiting -- and it was so clear, "Pauline was sick! She needs a doctor!" So off to the doctor you went. Without pain and ever full-of-life, the smitten grandmother built you a new home: a place where you might spend your twilight years in peace, safe from the hawks and foxes, and certainly, you deserved the best real estate. Every morning, you flopped to the door to greet the grandmother -- we both know that she always brought you the sweetest treats. And through all that, you never stopped sharing your nutritious bounty, it was a precious thank you that was marveled at by all. . But then you stopped eating, and the grandmother couldn't let you suffer. A conventional farewell wouldn't do, wrung necks are not befitting of legends. . Pauline, you were the most loved chicken that has ever been and may ever be. You are missed, with many a big stick in your honor. ____ #thewomanwanderer #inmemory #survivor #warrior #story #storyteller #storyoftheday #farm #farmlife #animalfarm #fowl #coop #rooster #BlueRidge #Appalachia #Virginia #chicken #hen #legend at Bentonville, Virginia

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@thewomanwanderer

Memorial Day, an ever-humbling reminder of the near-and-real mortality of so many of my loved ones. Remember the fallen, they are our brothers and sisters, sons and daughters, mothers and fathers. One family, by birth or by choice. ___ #thewomanwanderer #thankyou #RIP #inmemory #memorialday #militaryfamily #veteran #summer #forest #green #landscape #adventure #explore #travel #photography #travelphotography #travelphoto #travelpic #travelgram #photooftheday #picoftheday #Shenandoah #BlueRidge #Virginia #nomad #wanderlust #home at Bentonville, Virginia

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