The Ethiopian Experience: Trekking the Highlands of Lalibela

Experienced by Kimatni D. Rawlins

Selam, and welcome to “the origin,” the African nation that has never been colonized by Europeans. Look up The Battle of Adwa where King Menelik II defeated the Italians in an epic sequence of historical consequence. So finally, after years of research, readings, teachings and listening to roots reggae rhythms epitomizing The Promised Land, I finally took the requisite steps needed for a transformative Ethiopian experience as part of my 6th Annual Nomadic Journey in Addis Ababa and Lalibela.

I ventured to Ethiopia for its strength, Abyssinian culture, veggie injera meals, traditional Eskista shoulder dance up close and to breathe with deep spirit from the highlands of Lalibela. I began the excursion upon landing into Addis Ababa, the capital and largest city of Ethiopia, while enjoying many of the historic sites including the National Museum of Ethiopia, Ethiopian National Theatre, Ethnological Museum, the Red Terror Martyr’s Museum, Menelik Palace in the Entoto Hills and the Historic Kidist Selassie Cathedral which is the highest-ranking Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahedo Church in the city. Sarcastically, I was also also looking for freedom fighting singer Teddy Afro, the Bob Marley of Ethiopia. Listen to any one of his classics and you will be become an instant devotee. Trust me! [Read more…]

Fit Fathers 6th Annual Nomadic Journey: Kenya’s Maasai Mara & the Balance of Nature

Experienced by Kimatni D. Rawlins

Jambo! It’s the Swahili greeting I heard and repeated regularly throughout my 2-week journey in the Motherland to experience the beauty of nature in its purest and most divine form. The 6th Nomadic Journey — where I venture solo like a rover to rediscover life, disconnect from addictive American culture and explore deeper consciousness and spiritual freedom — brought me to the lands of Africa to spend time with the wild in their natural habitat within the Maasai Mara National Reserve in Southwest Kenya.

Majestic, serene and spiritual scenes left me in awe for the entirety of the trip and ultimately fulfilled some of my profoundest, transcendental aspirations. I began the long excursion from Washington, DC and traveled on United Airlines to Frankfurt and then Lufthansa to Nairobi. As a frequent traveler I always fly with the same airline alliance to earn miles, upgrades, respectable customer services, etc. After traveling almost 3-million miles with the Star Alliance I’ve earned a prestigious position for exceptional treatment. Arrival to Nairobi took place on Jamhuri Day which is a national holiday celebrated December 12th to commemorate Kenya’s attaining of independence. As you can imagine people were rejoicing with adulation across the country. [Read more…]

Fit Fathers Egyptian Koshari Recipe

Life in Egypt was amazing during the 6th Annual Nomadic Journey as everything was aligned with the Kemetic stars during my quick and impromptu trip to witness the Pyramids of Giza and the Sphynx in person. See, Giza is the only architectural creation standing from the ancient 7 Wonders of the World so it was important to see the profoundness directly. I also experienced the Nile River by boat of course, took a tour to the Egyptian Museum for inheritance of cultural history and later learned how the people of Kemet made papyrus paper. Of course, my energy was spent after the long day of exploration therefore I was highly amazed after the tour guide, Ali of Wonders of Egypt Tours, introduced me to Egypt’s Koshari national dish which was divine. [Read more…]

Sanctity of Life: The Recipe for Aging Gracefully

My goal in life is to meet and spend quality time with as many beautiful souls as possible such as 80-year family friend George Maggot from St. Helena Island off the coast of West Africa. In London he invited me over for a home cooked veggie lunch that he prepared singlehandedly, a stroll in the garden park and life conversations to appease both our spirits. George walks a few miles daily, eats one main meal a day (mainly veggies and legumes), nibbles on fruits and nuts, maintains  a strong social life, tends to the garden a few hours a day, volunteers his time to help his neighbors and continues to travel to places like his second home in Ghana where he spent 40 years.

I do believe my soul gravitates more towards elders and wise men and women who understand my path deeper than the majority. I am humbled and grateful to be blessed with opportunities that continuously allow me to learn and experience. Thank you George!

-Kimatni D. Rawlins

 

 

Vacation Fitness in Paradise: Experience The Westin Resort Nusa Dua, Bali

Words by Kimatni D. Rawlins

Welcome to “The Island of Gods” in the magnificent Republic of Indonesia for an immersive vacation to focus on deeper spiritual awareness and living in the presence of Mother Nature’s serenity. Located between Lombak and Java, Bali is a majestic land consisting of volcanic mountains, mesmerizing topography, stunning flora and heartwarming people. The tropical climate — commingled with deep ravines, hillside rice fields, enchanting waterfalls and delectable Balinese fare — has created an indelible imprint that will remain with me indefinitely.

The lifelong dream of visiting Bali was shared by my wife Misa so we decided to manifest our intentions and make reality come true. Deciding on accommodations, whether it’s a resort, condo or villa, is always pivotal. Since Misa is a Platinum member with SPG we zeroed in on The Westin Resort Nusa Dua, Bali which is conveniently located 10 kilometers from the Ngurah Rai International Airport (resembles an ancient temple) and close to the capital city of Denpasar, the main gateway to the island. The luxuriant 5-star family resort is nestled on white sandy beaches with beautiful vistas of the Indian Ocean. The Westin was perfect for enhancing our constellation of wedding commemorations. [Read more…]

5th Annual Nomadic Journey: Life Rediscovery in Vietnam

The perseverance of the Vietnamese people is unwavering, their spirituality is deep, they are hyper active in terms of fitness, and the plant-based foods they consume are pure and divine. This is why I chose a week-long mountain biking tour with Cambodia Cycling to rediscover life while riding from Saigon (Ho Chi Minh City) to Vung Tau beach city. Continue to travel wide my friends and never rest on your laurels.

After a 22-hour flight from Washington, DC the plan was detailed but exciting. Once breakfast was complete we transferred out of the bustling city Ho Chi Minh to Tan Phu Trung village then rode through the rubber tree plantation to the Cu Chi Tunnels which were dug by Vietnamese during the American War. Next we pedaled from Tan Thanh to Ngai Giao then to Xuyen Moc and Binh Chau Hot Springs to have mud baths. Afterwards the team cycled along the coast to Long Hai in route to Vung Tau Beach City. The last leg had us continuing along the coast while finishing with a climb up to Nho Mountain to enjoy the sea view from inside the arm of the famous Jesus Statue. For more info on riding in East Asia visit http://www.cambodiacycling.com/. [Read more…]

Muay Thai Boxing Training in Bangkok

In Bangkok, Thailand we had to complete the “5th Annual Nomadic Journey” with a bang (no, not partying) at Krudam Gym for a session of Muay Thai with some of the city’s finest instructors. We have much more respect for these boxers after learning just a small fraction of the trade and then watching an actual match later that night. Now only if we can emulate their kick speeds which seem faster than their jabs. Impressive!

[Read more…]