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  • Writer's pictureAlessandra Fanizzi

A JOURNEY IN THE WORLD AS AN ITINERARY OF THE SOUL

I had the pleasure of being interviewed by Mirella Giannuzzi, Naturopath expert, Food Coach, and CEO of InformaBio®, a project aiming to share slow and authentic lifestyles and real and lasting well-being.

Below, is the article curated by Mirella, and published in the 'Healthy Life' section of her website.


 

Trekking in the woods, from Nagarkot to Changu Narayan Temple, Nepal


Can you travel around the world to get excited, discover yourself, learn to know yourself, listen to yourself, find that now dim light, and rekindle that fire that illuminates every inner and outer path?

Yes, all this can happen and that is why I have been working with love, professionalism, and passion for many years, so that each of us can learn to know and to express ourselves at the best, winning well-being and happiness to make this experience of earthly life, is an added value for themselves and others.

This deep physical and inner journey tells us about Alessandra, a friend and faithful user of my naturopathic treatments within which from the beginning we talked first with the soul and then with words. And that’s how you start beautiful trips, with people and yourself.

On her return we met immediately, I couldn’t wait to hear her and perceive her in the story of her journey and it was so detailed, deeply lived, and exciting that I could travel spiritually through her words, so I thought I’d share with you our chat so that everyone can be flooded with beauty and emotions, reconnecting with themselves, a gesture so known and theoretically simple, but that once is put into practice gives a new life, so we all deserve to live it in the fullness of our desires, with the heart and soul, net of all the extra.



Buddha Statue, Nepal
 

You have chosen an alternative gift for your birthday this year, a trip entirely studied and carefully organized by you: what was the itinerary of your trip?

For the beginning of the new year, which coincides with my birthday, I have finally gifted my heart with a journey, which I have desired for many, too many years, especially after so many challenges on my path and in continuous evolution.

An international trip, all for me, in the name of numerology that has always accompanied me.

4 travel destinations: Lonavala and Mumbai in India, Kathmandu and Nagarkot in Nepal, Bangkok and Ayutthaya in Thailand, Hanoi and Ninh Binh in Vietnam.

An itinerary lovingly designed by me, with only one protagonist at the center: my (well) being with curious eyes and eager to explore new lands, always moving feet and beating heart.

January 4th, my birthday, which I transformed into an even more special day, that of my departure.

9 flights were taken, between desired hours of waiting in the airports, to savor the relative flow of time, observe and imagine the lives of others, and enjoy mine, between different foods and ethnicities, warm hugs, and colorful luggage.

1 traveler, me, in the company of myself, of my rhythm, of my feeling. A beautiful caress to the soul.

1 cobalt turquoise backpack, purchased during that first lockdown made of closures, tears, and grayness, but that drew even bigger wings in my heart and mind.



First challenge, travel for 20 days with just a backpack: what did he teach you?

The backpack is just a reflection of ourselves and our lives. We live in the age of overweight: of luggage, of objects, and thoughts. We load up on this a lot. So enough. Enough with the excess kg, with those clothes that we take with us on the road but that we never wear. Enough also with the crowded world of thoughtfulness, which weighs like a boulder, and which instead must be thrown as if it were a bottle containing liquids before security checks. We have an urgent need for minimalism, of necessity.

We should take off and lighten to be happy

Just as Gabriele Romagnoli writes in the book "hand luggage only": "Live without' is a verb to be conjugated with exultation". Yes, I really rejoiced with that backpack of 7 kg, my faithful travel companion, which was for me a symbol of lightness, where the less won on the more, the less is better and draws quality.

Traveling light, on a trip, and in life.




Based on what you picked for each place?

In India, I had the good fortune to attend an Indian wedding, thanks to the wonderful connection created between the two newlyweds and me during one of my tours this summer, in Polignano a Mare (Ba). Besides this event of total cultural immersion, which has been the most incredible experience ever had so far, it was India that chose me, after so many years in which I, despite my attraction to this nation, was not personally ready for this land. Nepal and Vietnam have always been two of the many destinations on my wish list. And it was time to explore them with this very journey. And I still smile at the thought of finally visiting these magnificent lands. And finally, I chose Thailand because it is a nation so dear to me. After all, I lived there many years ago, and I felt its call in my heart, and I couldn’t wait any longer.



What are the places you have visited?

My eyes have experienced many places, and my soul has been filled with happiness. This always happens to me, because with the right eyes, you can see beauty and depth. Everywhere. And this applies both to your land and to other parts of the world.

On this trip, I visited the places that hosted the fascinating three-day Indian wedding ceremonies, containers of strong emotions, and pure smiles. I’ve entered beautiful Buddhist and Hindu temples that give you so much peace that it fills your whole soul. I walked through dusty streets of villages of local communities that smelled of poor and richly simple life. I crossed rivers and woods being embraced by Mother Nature and pervaded by silence after deafening city horns. I enjoyed the spartan space and the slow time in local places, with tasty spicy, and colorful typical dishes.


Delicious Pad Thai in Bangkok, Thailand

Beyond all this, the most beautiful places I visited are the wonderful hearts of strangers who then became close people even at a distance and the looks of humans crossed in the streets, which have created moments of profound beauty with considerable teachings, opening the way of awareness in the most different ways.



What did you catch everywhere?

Marriage in India was an extraordinary celebration of life beyond the event itself, which is very important for Indian culture. An infinite number of people rejoiced and participated sincerely, between songs and dances, among colors, flowers, fabrics, foods, spices, and smiles. Everything and everyone, every single being, on the same frequencies of Love. In a sense of union and brotherhood so strong, with no equal. And this is not so obvious. I get chills to think about it again.

I also got very emotional during the visit to the villages of the local communities, especially in Nepal during the 12 km trekking in Nagarkot. A bath in nature and the essence of life in its simplest but most authentic form. Observing those children who have nothing but who laughed happily, among imaginary games, goats, cows, dogs, chickens, and colored slums in extremely poor conditions. The eyes of Nepalese children pierced my soul and marked me forever.

I also saw so much beauty in the Thai Buddhist temples and in the Vietnamese pagodas, where the bent heads of individuals spread incredible respect and active devotion, with their prayers and rich gifts, kneeling before the gods covered with gold, flowers, intricate decorations, and incense. From the oldest to the most recent, in every nation visited, in these places, you take off your shoes not to step on the sacred spaces and add that peace and spirituality that the soul needs, in a suspended time that smells of deep connection with the Universe.





What challenges did you have to overcome?

On the road, there were different challenges, disguised in situations, but two are the ones that left me a mark mostly. For example, in India and Vietnam, crossing the streets is a daunting task, among motorcycles, people, bikes, carts, cars, and buses from all directions, with or without pedestrian crossings, in the heat and terrible chaos. The only thought is that you'll be dying invested. But the locals don’t care, so you have to learn to adapt and arm yourself with flexibility.

One day, in Hanoi, a little boy, who was watching me as I tried to cross the street, gave me a lesson, saying to me smiling, "You don't have to be afraid, you don't have to be afraid."

This is what I kept telling myself from that moment on, and every time I finally crossed the roads. These words echo now like a mantra, even stronger in my mind, whenever my soul is alerted to something I'm afraid of. Another challenge was the time factor in India, which is unbelievably expanding.

People are not rulers of time, but there they follow it with mastery and elegance. Nobody goes in a hurry, and nobody gets angry. No problem. In the absurd and indescribable chaos that populates the city, everyone is extremely calm, with their dances of waving heads from right to left, from up to down, which for a Westerner, especially when extremely punctual like me, would drag you even more into anger. But I learned to turn off that Western brain, breathe deeply, and let myself be carried away by the flow, always consciously. To enjoy and live more intensely the present time in its fullness.



What does the journey mean for you, with what state of mind did you live it?

I lived the journey without expectations, and this was the greatest gift I could ever give myself because I created an experience of deep connection with every moment. For me, travel is among the most important teachings that life can offer to a human being, it is the most beautiful gift to give and give. You must always travel, both when you are in your land and when you have the opportunity to be somewhere in the world.

Traveling means always having eyes hungry for beauty even where it is hidden.

It means discovering new lands, getting lost in the streets, and then finding yourself.

Waking up at 4 am, getting hours of car, to see the sunrise and enjoy the gifts of Mother Nature.

Adapting and questioning about the most different contexts.

Respecting the customs and customs, even if completely opposed to yours, even if you do not agree.

Trying and eating traditional local food to get in touch with the real culture of the place you visit.

Also, knowing the harsh reality existing and confronting it.

Always being responsible and sustainable guests, without exploiting animals, or people, and without polluting the places they host, in every sense.

Connecting with the locals, breaking down the plague of racism, prejudice, and cynicism in all its forms, and having the heart receptive.

Doing new things, and tasting the real soul of a destination, with all the challenges it presents you.

Traveling means getting to know yourself better, looking in the mirror, and embracing your flaws, to learn how to improve yourself, be inspired, and inspire other human beings who are open to life, through sharing.


Hugs, joy and infinite smiles in Bangkok, Thailand

Now that I'm back from this intense gift journey, I find myself in a somehow suspended moment, in which I feel like an alien (but this often happens to me), where my enthusiasm for this journey underneath my skin and heart, often contrasts with the surrounding reality, so many dead eyes and distracted hearts.

But it doesn’t matter. Travel is something personal, an intimate gift for which to be infinitely grateful, for life. Travel is Love.



The memory or the most beautiful memories you bring home?

The warm smiles and vibrant colors worn by the Indian population, the incredible Himalayan mountain range and the majestic Mount Everest with its 8848 meters, the big black eyes of the little girl in the village of Nagarkot, the endless hugs and sweet birthday surprise of Thai students after 10 years, the breathtaking beauty of the house of "King of Thai Silk" Jim Thompson, the strong gaze of a life made of hardness and endurance of the elderly Vietnamese lady sitting in her home, the long-awaited seasonality of rice and the importance of bamboo for the locals of Ninh Binh, the slow life along the Ngo Dong River, the enviable calm and resilient beauty of the little ladies on bikes with bamboo hats, selling colorful flowers and fruits in the crazy chaos of the Hanoi city, but also my liberating emotional tears left in hugs, taxis, airports, because I've lived so deeply everything, and created new memories.




What could we learn from the people of that part of the world?

When we visit India or Asia, some existing logic is completely alien to our Western brains.

We should learn to let go of some control over events, actions, and people and make life happen.

We should learn to honor more the value of time and slow life.

To practice calm and abandon anger, beyond the deafening chaos that surrounds us.

To learn to trust more, remaining with open eyes, but in the most authentic flow of the Universe.

To really live a healthy Life.



I’m sure that this reading has moved something in you too, that little voice that I suggest you listen to, to take care of yourself and start taking small actions that make you feel good.

If you want to discover with me the journey within the paths of your soul to find wellness and happiness, contact me, I will be happy to help you on this path!



 

Special thanks to Mirella, and to you who dedicated your precious time to this reading.


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