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2019 Recap

Remy Haynes and Henry Cavill, British Channel Islands

Well, I checked off some Bucket List items in 2019, the most exciting one being meeting my celebrity crush Henry Cavill in the UK in May. As some of you may know, I went back to school to get certified in Zoology. I graduated in May and celebrated with a trip to the British Channel Islands to not only meet Henry Cavill but run an 8 mile race for the animals of Jersey Island Zoo. That trip, running that race and meeting that hunky man was the highlight of my year. What? A girl's gotta dream. ;) 

Other fun accomplishments in 2019 for me were: 

The Leopard Project at San Diego Zoo Global

The Leopard Project at San Diego Zoo Global

So after a year and a half I graduated with my Zoology certificate from the Animal Behavior Institute. Going back to school was scary but I was so interested in the subject matter that the time flew by. Now, with some education and some 'in field' work I've earned a volunteer position at San Diego Zoo Global. I met with the conservation department as soon as I graduated and let them know I was interested in their outreach programs that are helping save endangered animals. Within 2 weeks there was an opening on the 'Leopard Project' and it was right up my alley. 

Changes Are In the Air

Changes Are In the Air

You ever just want to quit work early and go to the zoo? Me too. I've found ever since my great Bali adventure my heart has been yearning more and more to play. Although I enjoy my work, being healthy and finding true joy have become my first priorities and that attitude has changed many things in my life since Bali.

How I Did It

How I Did It

It's easier then you think to travel across the world to feed your soul. I did it, with a couple weeks of planning, not a ton of money and some courage. It was spurred by a conversation I had with a friend about a month prior to me booking Bali. I was searching hard to find an apartment. It seemed like the next step for me, since I'd had my possessions in storage for over a year since my break up. It was time to face the next phase of my life and find a place to live. Only problem was that every place I saw was a no, for one reason or another. I was frustrated.

Shooting Swimwear in Bali

There was a lot of planning that went into my month 'vacation' in Bali, including coordinating and executing several photoshoots for myself. I didn't have an official work visa, so these shoots were 'for fun,' but came with the idea of producing something beautiful and hopefully coming home with some new work I could be proud of. The idea came to me a couple weeks before I left. Why not make this a work trip Rem, I said to myself. Challenge yourself to produce some new stuff. So, I got on a local community Facebook page for an area I knew I was staying in.

Healer in Bali - Cokorda Rai

Bali is an island rich in spiritual heritage, with focus on healing and personal growth. I wanted to go beyond the traditional places to visit in Bali and seek out a well known healer to visit instead. 94 year old Cokorda Rai turned up several times in my Google search and upon checking with our Airbnb owner he was ineeded revered in the community.

Nusa Lembongan Island

Nusa Lembongan Island

I had plans to visit the Gili Islands 40 minutes off of Bali by boat but was told by a local expat that Nusa Lembongan Island was better. So, I changed my plans and took a fastboat (only 20 mins) over to the island. The views from the boat were stunning. We arrived at sunset and the burnt orange color of the sun setting on the water took my breath away. Several of us stepped off the boat onto the sand and just stood there watching the beauty unfold.

Meeting an Elephant

Meeting an Elephant

For as long as I can remember I've wanted to meet an elephant up close and personal. I couldn't do this at most zoos because the elephants are always really far away in their pen and of course, it's not allowed. So I've been determined to find a place were I could touch an elephant and I found it in Bali! The Elephant Safari Park is a santuary for elephants rescued from Sumatra, Africa where they are still being hunted for their tusks or killed by annoyed farmers who don't want to share their crops. They are on the endagered list because of a long history of this.

No bitterness. Only happiness.

No bitterness. Only happiness.

'No bitterness, only happiness,' reads a sign outside a coffee shop in Seminyak, Bali. It makes me smile only because I've spent a week here and understand the message. There is a beautiful harmony to this place and the Balinese seem blissfully unaware of it. They live in it every day, arriving to work on their scooters, sometimes with their dog and 2 children in tow. They smile, they serve, they laugh, they pray and they wake up and do it all again the next day.