Today is the 97nd day of my journey and I am becoming homesick. I've had some fun adventures in the last few months.
The volcanic eruption in Iceland in particular created many challenges for me in the last week of my European tour. I was in Israel when the ticket clerk at the airport informed me that all flights to northern Europe were cancelled.
Apparently the volcano was spewing lava all over the place and “there was no end in sight!” Next on my schedule was an all-day workshop in Paris, France, which I didn't want to miss, as it had been planned many months in advance. This class was supposed to start at 9 AM the following day, in only 26 hours. My destination was 2905.77 kilometers away from where I was standing. I had to get creative.
I begged the woman behind the desk to find me any ticket for any plane flying towards Europe. She opened her mouth to say no, as she had just done to hundreds of other desperate people before me, when her eyes double-took at her screen.
"I have one ticket to... Athens Greece!" she told me.
"I'll take it!" I cried, and placed my suitcase on the scale.
When I got to Athens, the situation was even more disheartening. There were signs all over the airport reading: No flights available!! Thousands of people were sitting, laying, and standing all around, often directly under the signs warning that, "sleeping at the airport was strictly prohibited." I walked past a weeping young woman who was trying to explain to ticket sales clerk that she needed to get on a plane because she was late to her own wedding! I approached one receptionist that seemed to be the least stressed of all and asked her for some help finding a ticket.
"I have no tickets available!" She told me sternly.
"Well, tell me then, what is your favorite color?" I asked. She looked surprised at my question.
"Yellow." She answered hesitantly.
"Please help me fly in the direction of Paris," I said, "and I will buy you a BIG bouquet of yellow roses!" I promised her.
"Well, I do have one cancellation for a flight to Rome." She said smiling modestly, "But they are already boarding."
I ran outside, hailed a cab, and we drove to the fancy hotel nearby, which had a floral shop. I am happy to say, the flowers were of outstanding quality, and although I was the last one on board, I did make the flight to Rome.
From Rome, I managed to find a single ticket for the last evening train to Milan, Italy. I arrived to Milan at midnight As I expected, all bus and train tickets were sold out two weeks in advance. I calculated the remaining distance to Paris. It was now only 641.31 kilometers, and if I found a car and drove non-stop for the next 10 hours I could still make it. However, all rental cars had been wiped out by other travelers. I began walking in the direction I needed to go, dragging my heavy suitcase behind me Just then, I saw a taxi that was not occupied. I stopped the car and asked the driver if he would take me to Paris. His eyes almost popped out of his head, and he began speaking in Italian. When he saw that I didn't understand him, he wrote 1500 Euros on a piece of paper.
"Uno, momento." I said, and went back to the railway station. I began asking people if they wanted to split the cab fair with me and drive to Paris. I quickly found four other travelers all heading that way.
We drove all night. For safety reasons we decided to take turns talking to our driver to keep him awake. But the driver spoke only Italian and some German. One of the passengers was a German man, who spoke a little French, and of the three French ladies, one spoke a little English. So, instead of talking, we kept singing until we sang all the songs we knew in different languages. We became friends forever. That entire drive seemed unreal. For one night our lives turned into a Hollywood movie. Our car was constantly full of laughter.
Nine hours later, as we were passing Leon, my French host, Claudine, began calling my cell phone and was excited to know that I was only 100 kilometers away.
Tired but happy, I got out of the taxi and walked onto stage only one hour late for my workshop. All 124 people had waited for me. They were so ecstatic that I made it, they greeted me with the French song, "The Rose." It was a fantastic class. Next morning I started planning my way out of Paris. I had to be in Thailand in two days. I managed to zigzag out of Northern Europe and in a couple of days I re-united with my family in Thailand, where we held a wonderful Joy for Life retreat. I had made it there so fast, that it took my luggage a week to catch up to me!
Last week Valya and I arrived to Japan for a lecture tour. We will return to the US in only twelve days.
After reviewing the European part of my tour, I consider it to be a great success. I visited 22 countries, taught 42 lectures in 38 cities. I gave over 30 interviews. My books have been translated into many languages. Green for Life is currently translated and published in 24 countries. Here are some of the highlights from my Europeans trip.I was flattered to see my books being sold in many German book stores.
Different wild edibles, such as chickweed, stinging nettles, and dandelions are sold at the farmers' markets in Hungary. Here is an example of the organic ingredients I used for preparing green smoothie samples for 170 people in Budapest. The green in the front is chickweed. As the demand for edible weeds is growing the farmers are happy to supply.
Ljubljana means ‘the city of beloved’ and it is one of the most beautiful cities I have ever been to. Here I ran into the farmers market, which was exciting because it offered a wide variety of produce. Farmers sell edible weeds. I bought miner's lettuce, baby dandelions, and organic fruit for my smoothies.
I am learning to sign books in different languages.
While traveling through Europe I was especially impressed with two things. The purity of tap water, and public composting systems. In most cities of Germany, Austria, Switzerland, and other countries, the tap water is as pure as it can be. No chlorine, or fluoride is added. The water tastes delicious and is readily used for drinking and in food preparation.
Valya and Sergei have been working very hard all of the New Year to put their most entertaining and informative workshops on DVD.
We are pleased to announce the much-anticipated release date of our two newest films on April 1st, 2010. With this newsletter we are officially kicking off the pre-sale. Order both of these DVD’s before April 1st and receive $10.00 off your purchase!
Valya’s DVD "The 7 Best Green Smoothies from Raw Family" brings Valya herself into your living room to show you how to prepare 7 of our all-time favorite green smoothies. In addition to demonstrating how easy it is to blend up exotic concoctions, Valya shares many timesaving tips and answers the most frequently asked questions about making delicious green smoothies. This DVD is a must see for anyone interested in becoming a green smoothie pro!
Running Time: 45 minutes
To preview the DVD or place an order: Click Here...
Sergei’s DVD "The Miracle of Greens: how greens and wild edibles can save your life" brings his world-renowned lecture to the convenience of your home. In this DVD, Sergei builds on the concepts of Green For Life (a book by Victoria Boutenko) outlining why it is so important to incorporate more green leafy veggies into your diet.
During part 2 of this DVD, Sergei introduces the importance of eating more wild edibles foods. He then takes the viewer on a virtual wild edible walk in which he demonstrates how easy it is to stay safe while harvesting nature’s FREE superfood!
Running Time: 70 minutes
To preview the DVD or place an order:
During the pre-sales we are offering a special $10.00 discount from the purchase of both DVDs. For the month of March only, we are offering a 2 for $25.00 sale! Expected delievery dates will be the 2nd week of April. You can order the DVD’s by Clicking Here...
Sergei and Brianna are going on tour in Australia and New Zealand starting March 24th. If you are interested in attending one of their lectures, please visit the Raw Family web site or check out Sergie’s new site www.sergeiboutenko.com
Visit our Newsletter Archives, by clicking here. You will find archived copies of Raw Family Newsletters dating back to 2005.