“The energy of the mountain is so powerful that you cannot live on its slopes without resonating with it, otherwise, discord will manifest in your life.”

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“The earth has 12 major energy centers consisting of eight chakras and four spinner wheels, each relating to one of the four elements earth, air, fire and water. Each spinner wheel has a particular purpose and Table Mountain is the earth wheel and is said to nurture and sustain, and to generate light.
All centres of earth energy are reputed to be excellent places for meditating. That is why so many people find themselves wanting to come to Cape Town – subconsciously they know that this is a holy place. The energy of the mountain is so powerful that you cannot live on its slopes without resonating with it, otherwise, discord will manifest in your life.” Source

I did not know it to be possible, but it just so happened that we slept on top of Table Mountain. The hike was crazy windy, we had to stay low and hold the plants to not fly out. Having enjoyed the 20-40 degrees past months, the sudden and major change of climate felt weird & cold. Being inside a cloud, we ran to the lake and dipped to the water. It truly felt like being on another planet.

 

Nothing felt better afterwards that going inside, sitting in front of the fire, sipping tea, eating dinner in front of fire and talking for hours. This might sound like another night, but far away form my normal night in Cape Town. For months, it has been too hot to sleep well. I prefer the mornings and especially time after sunsets more as you are more energised without the heat. Change in environment was again key to learn to appreciate the warmth and comfort of home. I felt like I saw Cape Town with new eyes this morning, feeling magical picking up my morning smoothie and observe the busyness of the city. It is crazy how much can happen in 14 hours.

“The best way to find yourself is to lose yourself in the service of others.”

Like in Hong Kong, in Cape Town as well you can experience 4 seasons within a day. Not right now as the Summer solidly keeps the degrees above 25 degrees constantly, but I’ve learned something about the wind lately, that can truly blow you by surprise. This happened to me yesterday when I left home in a flowy red dress, about to walk for my lunch date, since I don’t have a car anymore and I love to explore by feet. But there was no way, I had to take an uber to avoid running around with my dress in ears. Note to self: never leave home in a dress without checking the wind. It is quite high chance these days that the wind is really powerful, as I later yesterday witnessed while hiking up Table Mountain. Which is  a different story…

 

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We tried out a new lunch place Sexy Food, which I cannot describe with enough superlatives. The owner has suffered cancer, tried chemo for years, and then finally decided to give up with Western medicine and instead heal himself with food. He succeeded and once again proved that dood truly can be your medicine. Sexy Food describes themselves as:

“WHERE ANCIENT METHODS MEET MODERN MINDS

Sexyfood is the Nelson Mandela of Modern Day Eating Habits: A Lifestyle of Multi-Food Culture. It’s where Herbivore and Carnivore meet for lunch, where eco-awareness exists behind every food choice. Its a flexible mindset measuring ingredients that work best for individual.

THINK: DIGESTIVE, BLISS, HEALTHY ATTITUDE, FULL CIRCLE, ZERO WASTE AND THE RIGHT TO FEEL SEXY.

If you don’t recognise the ingredients or feel good about the way it was prepared, neither will your tummy or metabolism. You might be an eat-everything kind of person, animal eater, vegetarian, pescatarian, vegan, fruitarian, breatharian, but the real deal is the conversation you have with your body. Listening to the body is key when mastering the sexy food lifestyle.

LEARN TO LOVE THE PLANT KINGDOM AND EMPHASISE FOOD THAT IS FRESH AND ALIVE. BE AT THE PLACE WHERE BUSHMAN AND BUSINESS COME TOGETHER AND CONTRIBUTE TO A NUTRITIONALLY NET-POSITIVE VIBE.

Mission: The best way to find yourself is to lose yourself in the service of others.”

 

With experience I can tell that this is not exaggerating. The lunch buffet consists of living fresh foods, prepared with care and consideration. You feel nourished and alive having eaten kimchi, sprouts, greens, veg patties, beans, organic vegetables, essence bread and so much more… The dressings are probiotic ranging from miso to pesto and gazpacho an many more that I didn’t manage to squeeze to my plate. They serve buchu water, a South African herb leaf. As always here I had trouble choosing between the raw desserts which all looked divine. I ended up with peanut butter brownie.

Wishing these kinds of places built with love and care will spread around elsewhere as well. ❤

Seek… Find.

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Since landing to South Africa, driving to Stellenbosch, surrounded by mountain, I had been craving to watch Lion King again. This feeling only got stronger when we drive across the country and witnessed surroundings exactly alike. Thus I was thrilled when Spier Wine Estate organised an outdoor movie. There’s something magical setting a blanket to the ground, watching your favourite childhood movie, and seeing the stars light up and eventually covering the entire sky. I have said this since arriving here, but I feel like the stars are much brighter here than in Europe. Though it felt like it was yesterday I last time saw the movie, all the facial expressions being so familiar, however we realised that probably we never saw the movie in English before. Funny.

Otherwise last week was time of realising how much I love yoga. It’s been on and off for me for years, but now I crave to do it every day. I’ve always known I want to become a teacher one day, and now I am making plans to actually do it. Alongside writing my thesis, which I still find motivating, I see myself reading few pages of Chakra Yoga (by Anodea Judith) or wondering online seeking experiences of the teacher training. In short, when I get excited about something, I will go all in, and now what inspires me is yoga.  I can’t wait to develop, deepen my understanding of yoga and mind body connection, and eventually teaching to others. If all goes as planned this will be sooner than later 😉

I was also introduced to a new hidden gem, Orchard, on Long Street. A couple that I got to know at Saturday am outdoor yoga took me there for a juice and I was impressed by this place. The variety of healthy food options keep surprising me in Cape Town, I seem to find a new pearl weekly. I’m also happy of my new friends, Anni is Finnish and she’s here as an expat from a large corporation, yet she has the most exciting job. It is really rare to come across the Finnish people here which I love, but I also wish to get to know the few around.  Later on Saturday we went to Oranjezicht market. I munched vietnamese rolls, and traditionally had trouble choosing a cake. I went for banana quinoa chocolate cake and bought mint chocolate brownie home. 😉

 

On Sunday we hiked up Lion’s Head. This is probably my top 1 favourite activity to do in Cape Town, and I wouldn’t miss it as a visitor. It only takes max an hour, and you get to see   360 degrees of this stunning city. Cape Town feels small, but when you look it from another perspective, you realise how widely it reaches out. Khayelitsa township covers almost all the way from Cape Town to Stellenbosch and accommodates almost 2 million people.

 

 

“Can’t I stay a little longer? I’m so happy here.”

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For some reason I didn’t have any expectations of Lion’s Head, thinking that it can not be better than Table Mountain and our spot at Fresnaye Heights. Once again, I’m glad I have people around me who actually start checking things from bucket list and make things happen. We did the hike in say 45 minutes, just in time for sunset. As it was full moon, there were people up there but not too much. We found a great spot by climbing a bit further.

Overlooking Cape Town from this spot, I concluded that for me, Cape Town is the most beautiful city. The Table Mountain so close, coated with clouds reflected by sunlight, flowing towards the ground. The waves crashing to Clifton and Camps Bay and hilly roads below. Twelve Apostles standing there reflected by the sunlight, sun melting to the sea. This light before and after sunset makes the entire city feel magical. It cannot be explained, but I know I’ll miss these moments.

The point was to wait for the full moon after sunset. It is as impressive to move to the other side of the cliff to wait for the moon and see the lights of the city turn on. Cape Town often feels small in everyday life, but this is when you realise how huge it is. The lights of Khayelitsa, the township, reach all the way from Cape Town to Stellenbosch, and has almost 2 million inhabitants.

We didn’t have the patience to wait for what would’ve required an hour or two waiting for the moon to reach up. We did see it on our way down – it was huge and red, like super moon. Next time we will take a picnic and spend hours there to get the full experience. For now, this was beyond expectations.

The ocean stirs the heart, inspires the imagination and brings eternal joy to the soul.

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I never thought I’d develop such a relationship for surfing, especially here in the waters with sharks, but it happened. I crave for the Ocean, catching the waves and developing my surfing skills. Even if the conditions are more often too rough than favourable, every session makes me feel more free and connected to the earth. Surfing for me is the best form of exercising – you have to be totally present, dependent on how the earth has decided to serve you the waves on this particular day.

 
I don’t know if it’s my new wetsuit, new beach with easier waves (Muizenberg), or simply making progress, but I can finally actually surf on the waves. I always loved going out there, but it was often more about surviving through the waves.  Though I know the self-confidence I have now might change and your performance is dependent on so many things, I now feel like I am able to take the wave as it comes and choose to stand up and surf. This feeling makes all the inconvenience related to surfing (driving and sitting in traffic mostly;) so worth it. The Ocean really makes you realise how small you are, and how little you can control. For me, surfing and yoga are the best forms of therapy for the mind and body. There’s no way you can come out of the Ocean and not feel more free, more happy than before going there.

 

In Cape Town, the best spots for beginners are Big Bay and Muizenberg, in Stellenbosch, Strand. I also look forward surfing at Clifton, Lladudno, Hout Bay… one day 😉

Live the full life of the mind, exhilarated by new ideas, intoxicated by the romance of the unusual.

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Christmas started with a pool party at Hout Bay, overlooking Chapmans Peak. Such a stunning view I could easily stare every day. 

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December this year is all about enjoying this stunning city and its surroundings with dear friends from home. I got another missed visitor here on Christmas Eve. We’ve known each other with Valma for years but as she lives in London, we never got the chance to become too close. I’ve always admired her outgoing and super social yet hardworking character. She was the youngest I knew to graduate and start her career in London years ago. Her attitude and persona takes her to adventures which I love to hear. Last May, we had a rare encounter when she had flown home for the weekend for our two dear friends’ graduation party. At the dance floor of Pörssiklubi, while singing and dancing along with Chandelier and saxo tunes, I wanted to hear update from London life as always. I told her of my next destination, and we agreed she should visit. She flew back to London the next day, and texted me Monday morning if she can book flights. That’s my kind of way to handle things 😉

Now she’s here and what a better way to get to know each other better. I always knew we have quite a similar mindset. I admire her on many things – she’s done a lot at such a young age and is my definition of a career woman who knows how to enjoy life to the fullest. She also makes me inspired of living in London at some point. I was prepared for everything for our ten days here, but I’ve been really happy to see how she enjoyes the active and healthy lifestyle I try to live here. Our days have been filled with yoga, barre, hiking, surfing… Eating healthily yet enjoying the steaks this country does the best. We both share the dream of combining a healthy lifestyle that is easy to live in Cape Town, yet living in a European city where you can walk around and enjoy the excitement of a big city.

 

Our Christmas was nothing but traditional, yet cozy anyway. Christmas Eve dinner was grilled ostrich at Black Sheep. I still swear for this place, also the tomato goat cheese salad, a lot of red wine and chocolate brownie make a perfect meal. We headed to Kloof Street house for drinks afterwards – such a cozy bar making me feel like I jumped back in time to historical Paris or New York. I’ll definitely come back here.

 

On Christmas Day we hiked up Table Mountain. I’m very proud of my Londoner, we did the hike in 1h 3min which I can say is quite a good time for a first timer. Dinner took place at Carne SA, which is a safe bet for a meat lover. We can recommend the fillet with various sauces, and safari game platter for those who want to try South African specialties. I love the interior and atmosphere and the food is over the top quality for the price.

 

We took a barre class this morning, and are soon heading to Kirstenbosch to enjoy a picnic at the botanical garden. Later we’ll hike up Lion’s Head to see the sunset and then enjoy the city lights in the light of full moon. Hope everyone have had happy holidays ❤

 

xxx

 

My practise is my time to feel alive, loved, free.

I never forgot yoga, but facilities in Stellenbosch made me focus on other sports like gym and pilates past months. I guess it is good to rotate sports as well to find new passions and rediscover old ones. Now it is time to rotate again – new city and season, new sports. In Cape Town I am focusing on surfing, yoga and barre. Maybe some running and outdoor gym whenever my PT is involved. 😉

 

Yoga I want to keep in my life throughout though. Never have I stepped out of mat after a session and felt somehow better than before doing it, be it clarified mind, relaxedness or the endorphin of challenging your body physically. Here in Cape Town I can recommend the power yoga classes in Yoga Life. The feeling when you’ve given your everything and sweated like a pig, and realised the progress you’ve made since last time is just worth it, every time. As with surfing.

Also, we started doing short classes with Satu at home from yogaglo.com whenever short in time for exercising. I cannot praise this service enough. Last Winter, I did yoga almost every day at home from yogaglo. It was the perfect balance for the Kayla Itsines workouts I was doing back then. Some days I took a 20-30min morning yoga to wake myself up, or a 60 minute as the main workout of the day. I love that you can filter a class suitable for yourself based on what kind, how challenging, how long, held by who, and what part of body / mind needs attention.

 

My favourite kind of morning starts with a 30min Better Than Coffee flow by Kathryn Budig. I try to finish yoga with a short meditation.

My favourite classes so far:

What Do You Value Most? Chelsey Korus Level 2 45min Vinyasa Flow

Better Than Coffee Kathryn Budig Level 2 30mins

Deep Breath, Calm Mind Vinyasa Flow with Chelsey Korus Level 1-2 60min

Smooth It Out. Vinyasas Flow with Elena Brower. Level 2 20min

Outward Vision, Inward. Vinyasa Flow with Chelsey Korus. Level 2 60min

Learn Dancer’s Pose. Vinyasa Flow with Chelsey Korus. Level 2 15min

Focus and Flow. Hatha with Elena Brower. Level 2 45min

Love For Your Lungs. Hatha with Elena Brower. Level 2 60min

Your Strong, Innate Grace. Hatha with Elena Brower. Level 2 45min

Connect & Create a Beautiful Day. Vinyasa Flow with Jo Tastula. Level 2 45min

Creative Core. Vinyasa Flow with Chelsey Korus Level 2-3. 30min

Inner Stability, Outer Fluidity. Vinyasa Flow with Chelsey Korus. 60min Level 2-3

Twist for Rejuvenation Vinyasa Flow with Chelsey Korus Level 1-2 30min

Rediscover Your Heart. Hatha with Elena Brower Level 2-3 60min

Cultivating Presence. Hatha with Elena Brower. Level 2 90min

Liberate Your Breathing, Strengthen Your Body. Hatha with Elena Brower. Level 2 90min

My favourite teachers are Chelsey Korus, Jo Tastula, Elena Brower and Kathryn Budig

 

My inspiration. The whole setting. 😉