Sunday, October 25, 2009

We are all ALIENS here!

  • Just got back from 4 days in the Pantanal, Brazil - the largest floodplain on earth! We went walking for hours through the underbrush, did boat trips every morning and night, horse-back riding, fishing...
  • Saw so many amazing plants, birds, and wildlife: storks, emu, capybara, frogs, hawks, monkeys, nose-bears, butterflies, tortoises, frogs, snakes...!
  • Went fishing for piranha (hooked 2 but they were little, so threw them back)
  • Went on a night cruise to check out Cayman crocs - ended up getting into the boat about 3 metres away from one! SO AWESOME! (They´re little, and don´t eat humans, so no danger. Apparently. Hee hee.)
  • All I kept thinking as we went on 3-hour walks through the thick, lush green vegetation, and learned about how all the plants and animals and birds and fish co-exist, is how there is such a BEAUTIFUL balance in nature. Every creature has a predator, every creature has its prey. The cycle is perfect. We - humans - mess it all up. We don´t belong! We come in, destroy, ruin the cycle, build unnatural things out of unnatural materials, pollute water and air, disturb the entire system... how are we even here?!?! We so clearly DO NOT BELONG HERE! Think about it.
  • Don´t panic. I haven´t lost my mind. Just dealing with greater existential and spiritual and philosophical issues. It´s a glorious gift to be able to philosophise, and contemplate, and piece it all together. Or attempt to, at least. ;-)
  • I am having the most amazing time in South America - Brazil specifically. I´ve gone from sleepy beach towns, to magnificent quiet islands, to fabulous wild Rio, to the ecological heart of the continent. And tomorrow... *drumroll please*...
  • I´m heading to the Amazon!!!
  • That´s right! I take a 24-hour bus, then a 4-day boat all the way up to Manaus, the very centre of the Amazon Basin!
  • In truth, my plans have been changing daily. It´s so much more fun that way! I love being this spontaneous! And I´ve been making wonderful friends along the way, so I find myself travelling with good people all the time.
  • So... au revoir, dear readers! I´ll be back again soon with more MAD ADVENTURES!!!
HUGE love!!! xoxox

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Rio, eu te amo!

  • What a city! Natural beauty everywhere in the form of mountains and sea and forests, incredibly warm and friendly people, dance clubs with the energy of a carnival that go on all night until the sun comes up, cheap and delicious caipirinhas and food... and Christ the Redeemer overseeing the whole thing!
  • To be perfectly honest, I get a real kick out of the statue of Jesus. I can't explain it. It's obviously not a religious thing for me, but there's something quite magical about seeing the clouds part over the mountains to reveal the outstretched arms of a protective, benevolent figure. And at night it's lit up! So in the black sky, there's a bright white statue floating in the air, symbolising love. At least - that's how I interpret it. And it makes me happy.
  • I went on a favela tour yesterday, which was fascinating too. Felt perfectly safe, pefectly comfortable, and the sociologist in me absolutely loved fitting the information into the little book that's being written in my head... There's almost no petty crime in the favelas, as the drug lords that run them put the word out on the streets to avoid unnecessary police attention. In effect, it's safer to walk around in the biggest slum in Rio than it is on Copacabana Beach! Or maybe not. ;-)
  • Have I mentioned that I love Rio?
  • So far I have been to 2 dance clubs, both of which have been filled with young people dancing to all kinds of Brazilian and Latin music - and it's been AMAZING. Everyone here can dance! Really, really well! It's so much fun! People sing along to the music at the top of their lungs, laugh, play, make trains through the dance-floor, smile - it´s so much fun! The highlight so far: Being told that I dance like a Brazilian. Yeah baby!!!
  • I could continue gushing indefinitely about this wonderful city. It's truly deserving of all the hype. But I shan't - I have to go out dancing now!
Amor e beijos!!!

Monday, October 12, 2009

Happiness is...

  • So here I am, in Ilha Grande, an island paradise a few hours away from Rio. It´s GLORIOUS. Lush, green, beautiful, wild, wonderful.
  • There are no vehicles on this island. Only boats, and people. And beaches, and mountains, and beautiful amazingness EVERYWHERE.
  • Today was the first day of sunshine since we arrived 4 days ago, but I have met some amazing people in the hostel I´m staying in, and it´s been good to just chill out and hang around indoors - reading, chatting, sleeping, chilling...
  • The travelers that come to South America seem to be a different breed: more mature, more grown-up, more well-travelled, more relaxed. There´s been a very communal atmosphere in all 3 hostels that I´ve stayed at in Brazil so far, and the one I´m in now feels like being in someone´s home! There are only 10 of us staying here, and the rainy weather has caused us to huddle up indoors in the communal area downstairs. We´ve been learning Portuguese together, cooking communal dinners, doing sudoku puzzles, having guitar sing-alongs, making caipirinhas together, hanging out. It´s been wonderful. I SO needed some down-time after Europe!
  • And then today... THE SUN CAME OUT TO PLAY!
  • We did a 3-hour hike up and down a mountain to the other side of the island, through lush, thick green vegetation to Lopez Mendez beach, apparently considered one of the most beautiful beaches in the world.
  • And it IS. WOW WOW WOW. Powder-white sand, turquoise waters, green-green-green mountains all around. Just breathtaking.
  • I love it here. I love Brazil. I love South America. Life is SO SWEET. I feel blessed and grateful.

Love you all. xox

Friday, October 9, 2009

Tribute to the Original Wild Child

  • My mum is amazing. Any of you that have met her will agree. Those of you who have not, you may agree too! :) A true original. Ain´t no-one like her in the world.
  • To the woman who spawned Wild Honey: I love you SO VERY MUCH!!!!!!!!
  • My mum is the voice that I often hear ringing in my ears, proclaiming loudly in her Russian-Israeli-Italian-SouthAfrican accent: "Screw dem all!!!" It is she who has taught me to be free, to be fearless, to revel in the world, to enjoy every moment, to dance and laugh and sing with all of my heart as much as I can, whenever I can.
  • My mom is the person who taught me to be kind to people, to always say something positive and make someone smile, to love with all of my heart, to believe in people.
  • My mom has not had an easy life. She has had to bear burdens that other people could never imagine. She has literally come back from the dead. She is a survivor, a fighter, an inspiration.
  • I hope that when I have children one day, I too will love them as she has loved my brother and I - unconditionally, always FULLY supportive, always encouraging us in every way, and bending over backwards to make sure we fulfill our dreams.
  • I just got to Ilha Grande this evening - the most gorgeous Brazilian island - and I went out right away and bought some delicious Argentinian wine, which everyone at the hostel is now drinking in your honour, mummy.
  • I love you very much, Mamulinka, and on this day of your birth, the 9th of October (every year! :) ), I dedicate my blog to wishing YOU - you glamorous, wonderful, warm, loving, strong and amazing woman - a FABULOUS year ahead!!!


Thursday, October 8, 2009

What´s in a name...?

  • Some of you have commended my choice of name and web-address for this blog. As with most things in my life, they came to me on a whim, and seem to work perfectly.
  • "Wild Honey" - the blog title - is a shade of lipstick that was amongst the prizes that I once won in a beauty contest when I was about 12 years old (Yes, I did partake in such silly things once. I grew up in a small town. You find ways to entertain yourself.) Anyway, I loved the name, loved the spirit of what it evoked, and always thought it would come in handy for something one day. Et voila!
  • "Hurricane Honi" - the web address - is a name that I seem to have picked up along my travels. Go figure! Originally coined one drunken, debaucherous dinner-party night at the Bachelor Pad in London (my home away from home, where 3 of my favourite boys reside), I liked the ring it had to it. Shortly thereafter I met, and travelled with, a divine Japanese girl in Naples, and she started calling me Hurricane Honi out of the blue too! It appears to be a recurring theme. :)
  • Onto other things: the weather seems to be changing. So tomorrow we're moving to Ilha Grande, which is supposed to be gorgeous. I´m currently travelling with a wonderfully sweet and chilled young English couple, and an uber-cool Californian guy. We all met in a hostel in Sao Paulo, and have been hanging together in Paraty, and tomorrow we all taxi-bus-ferry together to the next place. FUN!!!
  • Finally, I`m obviously really new to this whole blogging thing. Any and all feedback will be HIGHLY appreciated. Let me know what you think, sign up, become a follower, give me some suggestions, sing my praises! ;-)
  • Parting thought: there are few things as amazing as moments of raw, pure, beautiful human connection. Last night, while sitting in a tiny beach-hut to get shelter from the rain, and listening to the waves break on the shore, over red wine and honest conversation, my new friend turned to me and said "You know why I like talking to you? Because you make me feel like I´m not alone in this world." Wow, right? I love this world.
  • And with that, I shall sign off.

As always, love and kisses to you all. x

Wednesday, October 7, 2009


Hello darlings!

I´ve finally done it! After months of thinking what a good idea it would be to start a blog, I have finally got my ass into gear and prepared a blog in which to record my adventures!

So... here we go!

On the 1st of October, I boarded a plane to Brazil. The South American adventure begins!

After landing in Sao Paulo, I realized right away that what I need more than ANYTHING at this point in my life, is... BEACH.

I made friends at the hostel right away, and a day later found myself on a 6-hour bus-ride to a little slice of heaven called Paraty. It lies between Sao Paulo and Rio de Janeiro, and it is MAGIC here.

Exactly what I needed after the CRAZY month of September, which saw me race through London, Paris, Milan, Venice, Rome, Florence, Naples, Barcelona and Ibiza. WHOOP!!! What a month!

So here I am. "Tranquillo". It´s my new favourite word.

I´m hanging out with some awesome people, travellers and backpackers and people working in the hostel... Americans, Brits, Swedes, Argentinians, Italians, Kiwis, Irish, Portuguese... the whole spectrum.

Today we took a boat-trip around the bay. Islands and beaches, jungle vegetation, fresh seafood, blue skies, sunshine, good people... HEAVEN.

I feel blessed... happy... TRANQUILLO... :)

Love and kisses to you all. xxxxxxx