(AP Photo/Charles Dharapak)
Every once in a while, I find myself in extraordinary situations and last week was truly an exceptional one. Yes, that's me in the purple scarf, in front of Senators John Kerry and Joe Lieberman, behind Chris Lu & Tina Tchen of the White House, and further behind President Obama, Vice President Joe Biden (not pictured) and former President Clinton. We were all remembering Senator Daniel Inouye who had passed away earlier that week.
(AP Photo/Charles Dharapak)
Hola from Playa del Carmen where I'm cooling off at an air-conditioned cafe and enjoying an iced mocha.
Why am I not at the beach? Well, I've just concluded a fabulous week in Tulum to celebrate the nuptials of a couple of dear friends. And judging by the photo here, their marriage is off to a great start. Just as the officiant started his tribute to those who have passed on, a rainbow appeared in the sky. Blessings indeed!
We took over the entire resort, which offered a fabulous selection of cabanas and suites that fit a variety of budgets and needs. If considering a destination wedding, I beg any of my friends to consider La Zebra. The rooms were all gorgeous and comfortable, while the service was impeccable. They even have the best salsa night in the entire area on Sunday nights, apparently a destination as some people travel from as far away as Valladolid.
I've got a couple of days in Playa before heading to my next destination across the Atlantic. I love this town, but it's not as much fun without everyone. Everyone from the wedding party has returned home or taken off to their all-inclusive destinations, including the happy couple, and most of my friends here in Playa are traveling, themselves. Looking forward to tomorrow evening when I head up to Cancun to see some friends who actually are around and attend one of Araceli Dominguez's classes on ancient wisdom. I think it'll all be in Spanish, so hoping I'll be able to understand.
Below are some photos from the wedding and dinner with a couple of friends last night at Russell's restaurant, Carboncito's: amaaaaazing Mexican food.
Most of you have known me for straddling a few professional careers, all with the general theme of helping other people be more successful in their lives and/or their professions. Back in 2006, I established a burgeoning business as a life coach and holistic healer, focused specifically on helping to empower people to overcome their obstacles and find true success within themselves. It thrived, and as my (now ex-) husband witnessed the transformation of my clients, he naturally desired the same for himself and decided to leave the military and go to school full-time. Due to a recent health diagnosis, I made the practical decision to return to steady employment in order to maintain health benefits (no semblance of Obamacare at the time) and took a job with the largest privately-funded non-profit.
I felt blessed every day to be a part of an organization whose primary purpose is to help people lead healthy and productive lives, and yet I struggled every day to do a job that had little to do with my natural gifts and talents, while opportunities for me to exercise them even a little bit dwindled further and further.
On the side, I maintained my business to a small degree and expanded my repertoire to (mostly food & travel) writing and recently, photography. Every once in a while, I would get asked to participate in some interesting projects -- most notably giving a couple of workshops at Emergence Creativespace's 11.11.11 Gathering in Sedona. During that week, I was my Self, unfiltered, and I had never felt more authentic and thus more successful.
Since returning home to DC, I've been figuring out how to reconcile this newly bared creative/holistic side of myself with my more structured/practical side and decided to hang up my security blanket and in January, I tendered my resignation with the day job. Tomorrow begins my final week -- can you say HOLY COW!??!!?
So what will I be doing? Living (and working) a life of Taste, Travel and Transcendence. In addition to focusing on my business, I'll be head of community and philanthropic partnerships at Operation:Eatery, a consulting firm that specializes in the culinary industry. I'm also working on a number of interesting projects that all in all, help people "Feed their Dreams." And while I intend to stay in DC, my work is not exclusive to here, so I hope that we may have an opportunity to connect in person in the near future.
If you'd like to learn more, you can visit my websites at chooseoptiond.com, daphnedomingo.com or OE's at operationeatery.com.