As some of you may know, I was hiking the Quilotoa area high up (13,000 feet) in the Andes mountains for a couple of weeks in Ecuador. My first day in the area was pretty scary. The wind blew so hard that it actually knocked me horizontal!
Had I been standing a foot more to the right, I would have fallen to my death.
I’d grown up in Chicago, also known as the Windy City, with 50 mph winds and had never experienced this before. Would I survive the Quilotoa crater rim hike, or would the strong winds blow me over the edge to my demise?
The Quilotoa crater lake is one of the most awesome sights I’ve ever seen: right up there with Niagara Falls and the Grand Canyon. The lake is bright turquoise and surrounded by a very high rim of what was once an active volcano. After that fierce wind had knocked me on my ass, I decided to solicit the aid of a hired guide, an Andean man named Francisco. Surely he would know alternate paths in case of wind. The hike took six hours. Several times there were long stretches not suitable for those with fear of heights: put your foot off the narrow path and you fall to your death, as many have done. But I was so ecstatic that it wasn’t as hard as I’d imagined it to be that I couldn’t help but look down, with a death defying dopamine rush! Francisco would admonish me, “Don’t look down! This is scary, even for me!” (And he’s been a guide since ’85.)
As the hike came to a close, I was so happy to still be alive, and in fact feel more alive than ever, that I decided to tip my Andean guide 33% (meaning ten bucks on top of the $30). But those strong Andean winds blew the ten dollar bill from my hands.
Destiny is the darndest thing. As I ran after the flying money, I was struck to my death by a passing car. I’d survived the hike, and countless car-caused near-death experiences in Cuenca, only to be killed by a car in a town that can’t possibly have more than three cars total! (The village has a population of 150.)
When it’s your time, as they say, nothing can stop it. I’m reminded of the young teen in San Diego who survived cancer, only to be killed by a shark.
It’s really glorious over here on the Other Side—though we don’t always have the best Internet connection. Fortunately the Andes weaned me from my email addiction since I was virtually unplugged for two weeks. The best thing is that all the mysteries of life and death have been revealed, such as who really killed JKF, Jon Bonet Ramsey, Nicole Simpson, etc.
I was sizzling with curiosity over the question, “Had I not decided to tip the guide, would I still be alive?” So I enrolled in a class at Heaven U. called “Discourses on the Interconnection between Destiny and Free Will.”
I’ve already tried my hand at contacting some of you. Just learning how to do this email has taken me over a week. My mom is supposed to teach me how to sprinkle angel dust. I’ve already made ghostly physical appearances to a few of you who live in Cuenca. (Bet you thought I was still alive; that’s how good I was!)
But I have to say it was all worthwhile—dying or should I say “dimension shifting” was worth it to have seen that great Quilotoa Lake! And to think, even most Ecuadorians have not seen it or even heard of it. My goal is to put that area on the gringo map. I had lived in Ecuador almost a year , but felt like I never really saw or experienced Ecuador till I was in that region. And it isn’t like I haven’t been exploring this glorious country.
So this is where I need your help. I was taking notes to write a book about it using my photographs. This unfinished business is keeping me from evolving to a higher spiritual level. So….. this is my urgent request: could I enlist any of you to finish my book…
serving as my “ghost writer”?
Love from Above,