We talk about how the Voyage Vixens way is to seek out Eat PLAY Love experiences around the globe, but we’ve never fully explained from where that concept came. It’s self-explanatory in many ways, especially for those who – like us – are fans of Elizabeth Gilbert’s uber popular book Eat Pray Love.
Lindsay remembers calling friends after she had gotten through the first few chapters and saying, “Who is this person and when did she take the words right out of my mouth?” It was a visceral response to a book that many women hadn’t felt or empathized with in quite awhile. The book inspired women to take a journey as Gilbert did to get “un-stuck” from their lives. Throw away the map. Get rid of the skinny jeans. And LIVE.
Which brings us to… a road trip of course! We were on Highway 41, driving home from a winter adventure in Yosemite National Park, safely back on the road after dealing with a tire pressure light that mysteriously illuminated in the middle of nowhere despite all the tires being normal, talking as we do at the end of a trip. That includes planning, “where to next?”, and it struck us that what we do on every trip we take is eat, play, and love.
Eat — being the food, the drink, and the physical nourishment. The sweet, the savory, and the sensational. For Lanee, don’t mix the sweet and savory, and for Lindsay, there’s nothing better than the combination of sweet and salty. For Lanee, it’s an Old World style French red wine or a classic Manhattan. For Lindsay, it’s a full-bodied big Cab or a Cadillac Margarita.
Play — being the adventure or the silliness we encounter by living in the moment and testing our physical boundaries, putting our fears to the test, and having rip-roaring, scream-your-lungs out adventures. As we say, if we’re not wearing a helmet or a harness, something’s not right.
Love — being those moments that linger with you forever, or the people you meet along the journey that change your perspective, share their life, bless you with a story that takes you out of your life for a moment or a day or an evening to get a glimpse of theirs, and often it’s witnessing the kind of love that we dream about but in reality, is so very rare.
This last one – love – gets us every time when it happens. It’s not that the eating or the playing isn’t equally enjoyable and often the focus of our travel; it’s just that those “love” moments stay with you longer, like a permanent shift has occurred because you witnessed a special moment or bond, cried or laughed with a certain person, or were touched by another sharing their journey with you.
For example, in Calgary we were at Heritage Park on a wagon ride. It was a historical village with character actors. That’s all we need to say for you to know that it was a place that bored and annoyed Lindsay and intrigued and entertained Lanee.
Despite Lindsay not enjoying the activity, on that wagon was a young teacher caring for a girl with severe mental disabilities. The girl looked like she was six, but in fact, she was 17. The young teacher cared for her 24 hours a day, seven days a week, while the girl’s parents were at work. She said they came to Heritage Park every day because “it’s her favorite place… She knows all the horses by name. She knows all the people and they know her. It’s the only place she’s calm and happy.”
The positive energy, joy, and utmost attention that this teacher gave the young girl was astounding. Love at its very best. Patience at its very best. And respect for life at its very best. Those are the kinds of LOVE experiences we’re talking about — they change you. While we wish we were open and present enough to have them each and every day, the truth is we get stuck at home and often need to be on the road traveling to have the awareness or openness to let love, well, shine!
The Gilbert-esque mission we’ve created is about letting go so you can live your best life and be the best version of yourself as you can be. Sometimes that means closing a book, ending an era, saying goodbye, shutting a door, or putting a person or people in their rightful place of history in the story of your life so that you can move forward to a place where authentic joy replaces sadness and where dreams have the space to flourish.
Letting go means to come to the realization that some people are a part of your history, but not a part of your destiny.
― Steve Maraboli