Hello family! Now back in the house and after doing a little ritual with some mugwort, sage and lavender and day dreaming about building a little fairy path in the garden, I am ready for another writing/sharing session. Yesterday we arrived back from Edinburgh, Scotland, where we spent almost a week visiting Anne (Elke’s sister) and Laurence. The way back was emotional and tiring and the day finalized with a nice birthday party/go away party from our friends Dave and Laura here in the Netherlands. It was an emotional couple of days, but the emotions are what make me feel alive, so I end up appreciating these experiences and receiving a lot of wisdom from them.
We left for Scotland a bit more than a week ago. We decided to take the ferry to cross over the North Sea since this way we could take Lupe with us. We also decided not to rent a car to make the trip cheaper, so we hopped on 2 buses to get to Utrecht, then a train to get to Amsterdam, then another bus to get IJmuiden to the ferry and then the ferry trip overnight.
While on the ferry, in the evening, we spotted a sailboat sailing its way to what it seemed like the Netherlands or Germany, since it was going the other direction to us. It was beautiful to see, and I was able to transport myself to that sailboat, feeling the wind and going up and down these medium size waves. What an adventure! We still have the dream for sailing away with Elke so watching someone else do it was magical.
The trip went well, and we were happy to be on our way to see Anne and Laurence and also to see if I could find some wisdom from my ancestors in Scotland. I did not prepare anything before going because I wanted to let my intuition and the energy of place to guide me where I needed to go, or to show me where there was a teaching for me. Of course, my mind would still create expectations, but I was trying not to hold on to them.
After the ferry ride we took a bus to the Newcastle central station and then another train and a tram to get to Anne and Laurence’s house. Laurence met us at the station which was really nice and made us feel at home immediately. That is what family does. They gave us a home away from home.
The first weekend there we were tired, so we decided to stay in quite a bit, to hang out, talk, tell stories and to cook and eat delicious food. I even took my sourdough starter and made bread one of the days. I cannot think of a better way to get grounded to a place. I don’t like rushing and doing a million things once at the place. I need to soak it all in slowly.
That week, the Edinburgh Fringe festival was going on, so we went to some shows including some comedy (the British have a good sense of humor), some talks and bookstore of upcoming authors (here I bought a book called Plants: Healers and Killers and a book about ancient ways of cooking in Scotland) and we ended up our stay seeing a powerful show called Woke by a black woman called Apphia Campbell which described the tough situation that some black people in the USA have to endure. This show made me think a lot on what I can do to help these unjust events and mentalities from happening. I still don’t have the answer. The show made us want to continue talking about this more, so we went for a beer at a little pub traditional pub. Here we started talking about injustices in the world in general and how we need to shift from that as a human society. Even though we are a single species there is a wide range of points of views and sometimes these collide and sometimes people use power to impose these over others.
The night ended up with some old folks in body, but young in spirit, enlivening the place with some traditional Celtic music. We were transported several centuries back. We were immersed in the local whiskey and music of the old Scotland.
Before our final day of watching Woke and the Scottish band, I was feeling a bit restless regarding the hustle and bustle of the city. I was feeling a little overwhelmed and also a bit anxious to find some knowledge regarding my ancestors. One of the mornings I did a shamanic journey to the middle earth with the intention to find what place I needed to go see or who I needed to go talk to. The journey showed me Edinburgh’s middle earth which was also a hustle and bustle and then I went into a deep sleep where I don’t remember what else I experienced. However, after a couple of days from the journey I received an email that Amber Hill, from Medicine Stories podcast had released a new episode. An explosion of feelings rushed through my body and I immediately had a sensation that I needed to read about the person being interviewed in the show. So I went in the Medicine Stories podcast website and started reading about the woman being interviewed and it ended up being that it was Fay Johnstone, a spiritual herbalist and reiki teacher from Scotland! Wow! I said to myself, this is the sign that I have been waiting for! As soon as I finished reading the description of the show I sent Fay a message telling her about myself and what we were doing here in Scotland and about my ancestry, and asked her if there was anything or place that came up in her that she felt I needed to do, after hearing a bit of my background. To my luck, or the universe’s energies working to help me, and Fay’s awesomeness, Fay responded that same day and gave me several recommendations. Mainly to go outside and connect with nature. I knew that I needed to do this, but I was overwhelmed with my expectations and the city, so I did not know where to start. I was waiting or looking for a sign. She also mentioned that on Saturday (today actually) she was going to be presenting her new book, Plants that Speak, Souls that Sing, at a store in a town called Peebles. This town started calling my name. I knew I was not going to be able to be there since we were heading back on Thursday, but the town was still resonating with me.
That day, after receiving these new path markers, was a day full of feelings, some feelings of disconnection and also feeling a bit lost. I even made a little verse in Spanish that says:
Me siento perdido
Hay mucha gente aca
Yo no soy de la ciudad
Necesito mi libertad
In these moments, I have a really hard time making decisions and due to this I also feel that my relationships get hurt a bit because I cannot fully communicate what is going on with me. Either way we had a nice warm pizza night with Elkita, Anne and Laurence which felt like a warm place to be able to feel vulnerable and let my feelings flow through me. With Elke, we had decided, that the next day, no matter what, we would do some kind of adventure out of the city, together or separate, we did not know, but we needed to get these feelings and this energy on the move. Something was brewing.
The next morning, we woke up and it was drizzling. One of the alternatives was to go to the Pentland hills to do a hike, but with the rainy day, was not appealing, plus the town of Peebles was still deeply resonating with me. I suggested to Elke to take the bus to Peebles and she was onboard. I like it when we have a direction because then I can just be and open up, otherwise my mind starts confusing me with all the options and I get overwhelmed and I cannot decide, and I feel stuck.
We made a lunch bag, typical Sauter family style and also backpacking with Manuel and Dave style, which I really like, and we headed off to Peebles. We went with Lupe as well. She is an amazing traveler. We got on the first double decker bus 2 blocks from the house. We crossed the entire city of Edinburgh which was nice to see from the bus. On the south end of town, we changed buses to an intercity bus. Luckily, we had a 15 min wait to the next bus, since Elkita needed to use the toilet. Her bladder is getting smaller as the baby gets bigger 😊. We found a little hotel and she did her thing. The bus to Peebles was smaller but already the people’s and driver’s vibes were more ruralesque, some old ladies talked to us and Lupe, and the driver was kind and was not in a rush. The shift of energy had started. On our way to Peebles we saw the Pentland hills, which seem amazing and a must visit, and we started seeing the country side with all it’s nice sceneries and sheep. The mind slowly started to quiet down, and we were just contemplating the scenery. Elke and I love to be on the road, specially when Lupe is with us.
We got to Peebles and I looked at my watch and the time was 11:23am. What a coincidence. That is my birthdate. I have been noticing this time a lot. I knew we were in the right place. However, we got off in the “wrong” stop. We got off away from the center. It was raining so we got under the bus stop shelter and ate some short bread that Elkita had bought. It was nice. Since the rain was not so heavy and we had a small umbrella we decided to go for it. We set our way towards the center of town but making slight adjustments to the path as we felt like. Peebles has some nice creeks and a nice river and there are several foot paths that can be taken along these, so we just went and admired the beauty of this small town through its paths.
After some exploring we arrived to the center of town and the town greeted us with a natural foods store and the poster on Jay’s book presentation next Saturday. Yes, I said to myself, we are on the right path. We talked to the lady from the store which recommended us to go to the secret herb garden outside of Edinburgh, which Jay also recommended, and then we talked to another lady at the store that recommended us to go to the a little vegetable garden that was along the creek. We were excited about all these things. We continued our journey to the center or town and admired the gorgeous town on the river and surrounded by hills. We felt more in our element.
Eventually we got to the church and in front of it was the House of Gaia, which is a fairy store, where Fay was going to present her book next Saturday. We went in and met Hainsa, an Italian lady that was taking care of the shop. We told her why we were there and chatted for a while about the magic of life. We then checked the book section to see if anything would call our names and I found a book called Shapeshifting with our Animal Companions – Connecting with the Spiritual Awareness of All Life. This book called me. Even though it was not the particular subject I was looking for the book called me. Then I looked at Lupe and there was no more questions asked. I bought the book. We had a final chat with Hainsa and we left.
We did another little hike around some other trails in town and then went back to the center to get some traditional food. We found a very homey tea room where we could have home-made soup, macaroni and cheese and a scone. It reminded us of both Elke’s and my Grannies’ houses. It was a warm feeling.
It was time to start working so we went to look for a café that accepted dogs and were not able to find one, so we just hoped on the bus back to Edinburgh. It was a fine day.
The last day and on the train going towards the ferry I continued reading the Shapeshifting with our Animal Companion books. I was gladly surprised by the gems of wisdom that the book was providing. I was trying to see if I could start communicating with Lupe in an intuitive way as I learned from the book. This is aligned with what I am learning in Asia Suler’s course, Intuitive Plant Medicine, and what Stephen Harrod Buhner says about opening different perception gateways in his book Plant Intelligence and the Imaginal Realm. I love how everything is interconnected.
We arrived at Newcastle and eventually the time to go get the bus that would take us to the ferry came. We walked to the bus stop and to our surprise there was already a big line of people waiting to get on. We went to the end of the queue and as soon as we get there, Lupe starts communicating/interacting with the family in front of us. Their connection with Lupe was instant. Then we started talking to them until it was time to get on the bus. The bus was so busy that we had to just find places were to sit quickly. The bus ride to the ferry was nice but we were starting to feel the nostalgia of leaving the family behind and we were also feeling sad that we were going have to leave Lupe in the kennel, which she does not like. I don’t think any dogs like it. Luckily, we could go at any time to see how she was. We hang out with her before departing, then put her in the kennel and when to get ready for the evening.
Elke and I decided to go to the bar to talk about our feelings regarding all the week with Anne and Laurence. Elke was happy she could share the baby and the stories of the baby growing with Anne and that Anne could feel the baby moving. I was a nice bonding time. At the same time there was sadness to leave. It was a nice moment of both expressing ourselves and talking about our feelings.
As the sun was going down we decided to go see Lupe again and hang out with her on the outside deck and see the sunset. We got Lupe and headed out. To our nice surprise, when we got to the deck outside the family that had made friends with Lupe and us, were there as well and they were happy to see Lupe and us again. We sat together and started talking and sharing stories of life while Lupe was given love by everyone. We talked about many things and then we started talking about giving birth and the system in the Netherlands that allows having home births and helps the mom be really comfortable while giving birth. Then the mom of the family started sharing that they are homeschooling their child who is now 7 years old, already knows how to multiply, taught himself how to read and is reading Harry Potter books. We were at awe. I could not believe this was a possibility and they were so open to share their experience. They basically see what the child’s interests are and then they aid with the learning experience. It is based on the principle that kids are naturally curious. And of course, this is true, otherwise kids would not learn how to speak or walk. They learn because they want to learn, they want to be able to do things that they see. They want to experience. It was an eye-opening talk. Well after the sun set we said going night.
That night Elke and I went to sleep completely awe-struck. A new dimension of existence opened up and this wisdom came at the right time, 3 months before our baby is expected.
This has given me a new perspective on this new stage regarding being a dad. Even tough I do not really get worried much, the worry of if we have enough to offer our kid, sometime arises. This new perspective not only opens a new dimension of being it also teaches me that there is no single right way and that we have to be open to the experience as well and navigate it with the tools we have at the moment, just like we have been doing up to now.
This story exemplifies what Stephen Harrod Buhner calls the Golden Threads or what Robert Moss calls coincidences. Stephen Harrod Buhner says that we have to be open to receive these Golden Threads and then follow them. And Robert Moss says that we have to listen to our coincidences.
We decided to go to Scotland to see Anne and Laurence so they could connect with the baby and also because I had a dream where we were travelling with Lupe in a night that before going to sleep I had set an intention to see if we should go to Scotland or not (the financial side was the tricky part since renting a car and taking the ferry was expensive). The dream clearly showed us travelling so we went, then Amber’s podcast released an episode interviewing Fay from Scotland which was then having a book presentation in Peebles where we went, which is where we found the book Shapeshifting with Our Animal Companions and then Lupe connects with this family and then the family transmits us a knowledge that opens our minds to a new dimension. Looking back this could have never been planned for, we just felt it and followed it.
We are back home settling in to the routine but with our hearts open to diving deep into the experience of life.
Big hug to everyone and a special thanks to Anne and Laurence that gave us a home away from home this past week.
Blessings to all, open your hearts and follow the Golden Threads.