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So Grateful for All The Things...
Behind the scenes, very few people have known that my housing situations since 2017 have always been "temporary". Even in 2014 when I moved to Maui, my apartment - although in a prime area much sought after by everyone on the Island - was just large enough to fit my things... very tightly. But it was still far and away a wonderful place, in the most magnificent location, Napili in West Maui.
But in the summer of 2017, I was getting the nudges to move on. Things were feeling stuck on Maui, and there were few choices for travel other than neighboring islands. Going anywhere else meant hopping on a plane for far, far away places.
So this is when I made the conscious choice to put things in storage, go to the US for the end of the year holidays, and then begin a journey to travel the world for a year.
It was what I really wanted to do! To explore... "Andare in viaggio" as they say in Italian... to go on a journey. My work was all online by that point, and so becoming a Digital Nomad was an easy choice to make.
All my journeying is always guided by Spirit, and sometimes when things get a little tricky, having the ability to 'let go and let God' is a practice I've come to rely on.
Over the years, I've focused on maintaining and mastering this spiritual skill, which has never let me down, no matter what. This is not something you can learn overnight, but it is something that requires a great deal of faith, and a great deal of practice in maintaining that faith.
Having faith and knowing that a Higher Power always had my best interests in mind - for my greatest happiness - is what led me to go to Europe. Firstly, it was to discover the land of my ancestors, Chartres, France, and then to go to Assisi for "a few weeks of spiritual writing" and then continue on.
Or so I thought.
You can see much of the progress of that journey on this Blog by looking over the past few years stretching to 2018 when I arrived in Assisi.
But what's important to know, is that I always clung to that faith through a study of A Course in Miracles and the regular daily practice of meditation and journaling with Spirit.
When you maintain your spiritual life at the highest level, you can see miracles begin to unfold in your life as well. This is always my message, and it has been the message of sages from the beginning of time. God is on your side, but you must be able to hear and listen.
Assisi, Italy, as many of you may know already, is a highly spiritual place and the land of Saint Francis. It has a reputation for very high spiritual energy, and I can attest to you that that is very real.
It turned out for me to be a place I wanted to stay, and I knew that from the first day I arrived. I was literally stopped in my tracks, and said right out loud: "Why live anywhere else?!" It was so gorgeous, so warm and welcoming, so quaint and magical. This was exactly where I wanted to live for a while.
After a few years there, the nudge came for me to visit Munich for Oktoberfest. I mean, wasn't the reason I left Hawaii and come to Europe was to be able to just hop on a plane or a train and see many of the most wonderful places on earth? I love Europe, and just to have a week of play and exploring in Munich is the nudge that kept coming to me over and over again. So, I did.
This was 2019, before the pandemic. I had such a great time there and was so impressed by the efficient functioning of the city. By the multiculturalism, the quality of food and shopping, and the friendliness of the people. I knew, without a doubt, that this would be my next 're-location'. I didn't know when, I just 'knew' this was what was going to be next.
Seeing Munich for the first time, in 2019.
I saw Munich as so clean, so functional, old-world Europe at the same time as being high-tech contemporary and modern. I just knew that Munich would be next my next place to live. I didn't know when I would move there, but I was already looking forward to it!
And then, of course, we all know what happened in 2020 and beyond.
But by January of 2021, I was ready to go, and go I did. But not before several months of travel before leaving Italy, exploring Tuscany, Florence, and beyond. It was such a wonderful time! I will always remember being in Florence at a time when there were no tourists! The streets were completely empty, and strolling around, seeing all the beauty and art of that magnificent city will be etched in my memory forever. I am so glad I was led to spend a few months in Florence, and in the mountains of Tuscany.
During this time of continued "temporary housing", I always felt, and therefor knew I was exactly on the right track.
Driving through the Northern Italian Alps with
all my things, onward through Austria and then to Germany.
Getting to Munich included renting a mini-van and packing all of my things in it. Then I need to drive from Florence to Assisi to pick up more things I had stored, and then driving on and up toward the Austrian border. Wow, what an amazing trip through Italy!
I had no idea of the powerful nature of the northern Italian Alps, and moving into and through the Austrian Alps before crossing into Germany.
Obviously arriving in Munich meant moving into more temporary housing until I got the lay of the land there. I knew very little about that city! For sure I knew I wanted to explore it before deciding where I would live.
Not only that, but it wouldn't make sense to sign a lease on an apartment when I wouldn't really know if I had permission to stay there from the government for many months to come. So all my things went into storage again, and it was at least 8 months before I knew I had received my temporary residence permit, and had permission to stay.
Fortunately, in Munich, there are lots of options for 'Apart-Hotels' as they're called, a hotel room with a kitchenette. These are designed for workers who come to the city temporarily, and provide an excellent set-up with everything you need to make your life function: great internet, in-room cooking facilities, and regular, weekly cleanings. I actually loved the freedom of not having a lease or paying utilities, always having my space cleaned weekly, and loads of restaurants nearby to supplement with great meals.
The view from my apartment-hotel where I stayed for
many months upon first arriving in Munich.
Even after I received my permission to stay in Germany, I found another, larger and more well furnished full apartment that - in my mind - I knew was also temporary. But it was something I could move into quickly, without much fanfare and get right to work. Although it was a full apartment, and very upscale, I was surrounded by all of someone else's stuff: their furniture, their fixings, and all their kitchen gear.
I could not, nor did I really unpack fully, nor could I call it my own. Believe me, I was so grateful to have this place for an eight month lease, as even that was very difficult to obtain and required a lot of negotiation with the landlady. But still, I kept my eyes open for a more permanent place.
If anyone would have ever told me how difficult it was to get an apartment in Munich, I wouldn't have believed them. In fact, so many people did tell me it would be difficult, and no matter what anyone said, I knew deep inside that I didn't play by those rules.
I never play by the conventional rules, no matter where I have lived. I always get an amazing place, when everyone tells me it's "impossible". I knew deep inside that I knew how to maintain a lot of faith that good things were on their way! Munich was going to be no different.
They all said "It's impossible get a place here!", or "You're better off moving to the suburbs, and then take the train in. It's only 15 minutes." No, thank you. The suburbs and having to get a car are not what I came here for!
So at a certain point after COVID restrictions started to be lifted, the borders between the US and Germany opened up and I decided to give up my temporary place, and go back home for a few months. It would be the first time in 3 years!
After that long trip, and when I got back to Munich, I moved into an apart-hotel again, and while getting my work back in place, I also decided to dig in with the apartment search. I was ready for something more permanent now.
And so I made it a daily task. I kept searching and searching, every day. Putting in applications and waiting to hear back. And for several months, I was perfectly at peace, happy in my hotel room, and I accomplished quite a lot on the backend of my business.
For housing here, every website that offered apartments for rent, I was all over them. Sending emails, and having an account profile that could be viewed. I was submitting applications incessantly for months on end. But what was happening was not only was I getting refused, I wouldn't even receive an acknowledgment that I had sent them an application!
Spiritually speaking, what was the challenge on the exterior?
Landlords here don't really know what to do with a 'self-employed foreigner'. To them, this is a sheer risk. And in Munich, as in many German cities and towns, there are very strong tenants rights. You cannot just get booted out of your place whenever the landlord feels like it. It's illegal to do that. So they need to be very careful, scrutinizing every detail of your application before they consider you.
And more to the external reality? Within one hour of any new listing, there were anywhere between 100-150 applicants all wanting the same place! I kid you not. And it didn't matter the price range, whatever was available was highly sought after by so many seeking housing in this city.
So, because I know that we are always creating our own reality, I had to look at what was going on for me on the inside. Isn't this what I am always talking to you about? Getting clear, and building your connection to Source?
Well, I saw that I wasn't clear. The vision just wasn't coming to me! After looking deep within, I saw that I didn't know what I wanted.
I knew where I wanted to be, having scoped out and experienced all the neighborhoods in Munich by then, and I knew exactly what part of town I wanted to be in.
There are furnished, and unfurnished places available for rent here. A furnished place would mean living in someone else's living room furniture, bedroom, kitchen, etc., and it never really quite feels like your own.
An unfurnished place for me meant spending the next few months shopping and looking at things just to get it furnished and set up. And shopping in Germany is entirely a different scenario than shopping in your own home country: all the stores are different and new, and some have specials, and some are very high end. So I knew it would be so time-consuming to do a really thorough shop and comparison to know what I wanted. And quite frankly, I really didn't want to spend all that time doing that! It's just too time-consuming and would take away too much from my business, which I so wanted to concentrate on.
So what could be the solution? I didn't know which route to take precisely. Should I get a place that's already furnished, or unfurnished? With a kitchen, or without? These questions plagued me. "What should I do?" I would ask Spirit. And "Trust" was the only answer I would ever get.
Sometimes that didn't feel like enough for me! I wanted to do more! I wanted results faster. "I want what I want and I want it now!" Haha. Do you know the feeling?? (That's the spoiled brat fearful voice, forgetting that a Higher Power was looking out for her at all times.)
But unfortunately, now, the pressure was on. Oktoberfest was coming. This event in Munich is the largest in the world. Munich is the originator of all Oktoberfests, having started the harvest celebration of beer-making in the 1400s!
So now, the whole world seems to descend upon this city in a celebration that they have not had the opportunity to partake in in three years.
So what would that mean for me? That meant that as of September 15th, the price of my Apart-Hotel would be going up 4 times! Yipes! Same room, same place, just costing 4 times more! No thank you, I will not accept that!
I had to dig deep. "Why God, is this happening to me? Why is my situation still in temporary accommodations?" I didn't want to live out of my suitcases anymore. It had been long enough now, and I wanted to get settled in my own home.
And for all the apartments I applied to, no one would even respond to my applications. This was getting soooo time-consuming as well.
But I know better than to blame what's on the outside.
I know better than to "ask God 'Why?'"
I know that everything originates within me.
"Infinite patience produces immediate results."
That quote from the Course crossed my path in that week of real confusion about my lack of results.
And I also knew that I had to get clear.
I stretched my faith even further than it was already.
I got into the understanding that my place was already there for me, and I would find it and move into it at exactly the right time.
Whenever I get into a conundrum and don't know the answer, or the solution to a thing, I get silent and ask for a miracle.
I understand that 'I do not know my highest and best interests'. (Also from the Course.)
I understand that there are many, many elements out there in the world that I don't or can't even know about! Such as where exactly my place would be, at what stage it is in now, and if there were any steps for me to take to align or make contact with it.
So I had an evening of deep introspection. And what I got in contact with were some old buried wounds that told me that 'I don't get to have my own space'.
Woah. These were quite left over from growing up in a large family with limited resources. And as a younger child in the bunch, the space I got was what was left over after everyone else had their spots.
Yep. That is how I grew up, and unbeknownst to me, that old paradigm - deeply hidden within - was still playing out there in my reality!
So I did some deep healing inner work.
What I discovered underneath, was a power and a rage at what I felt I deserved in life.
I got really in touch with those deeply buried emotions, and I loved and embraced them all. I prayed to Holy Spirit for release.
What I got next really took me aback. It was the uncovering of my Will. (We will learn more about this in future classes.) A force and a power that can create anything.
By the next morning, that power had turned into a strong desire to take ACTION, really powerfully.
I went back to the sites that offered apartments, and I wrote the best damn introduction application you have ever seen.
I stripped my stringent parameters, and opened up a wider net to view as possibilities for me. I then applied for over 20 apartments in the space of an hour, letting all the landlords know that I was available to move in immediately.
Two people answered. I know that doesn't sound like much, but for me, this was a treasure!
One of them wanted me to agree to a €12,000 security deposit before she would let me even look at the place! (Um... not likely sister.)
Another landlord had a great space, but couldn't reach the tenants to allow me in to take a look, for at least a few more days. "Ok", I said. "I'll wait to hear back from you." Later he told me it would be at least three or four days, as they were out of town on a trip.
Soon after that, the phone rings. It's one of the landlords I had applied to, but hadn't heard back from. Her name was Noemi, and she spoke English! (That's the same name as the new daughter of a teacher/colleague of mine and I had never even heard that name before that!)
"Can you come for a viewing at 4 o'clock today?"
"Yes, I can." I said, and she gave me the address.
When I arrived, Noemi showed me the apartment. She owns it and she explained that everything was new, that she had completely re-done everything, from top to bottom. New hardwood floors, new kitchen and appliances, a new bathroom, new bedroom furniture, and new paint throughout. You never see this in Munich, ever.
There was new living room furniture, expensive wool carpets, and even new outlets and internet connections in every room, and this is in a building that's over 100 years old! I couldn't believe it. Even the scent in the apartment was wonderful, and she told me later that she and her mother had polished all the wood with beeswax just the day before. There was even a storage room in the basement downstairs that including shelving, and was dry and mold-free. I'd never seen a basement so immaculate like that before and I told her so.
Here was my miracle, and I knew it. Finally!
I could not have planned this solution better myself. It was furnished, saving me a lot of time and energy in buying all new things, however, this furniture wasn't already lived in by someone else, it was brand new! Including the whole kitchen...
AND it was in exactly the neighborhood I loved, one block from the river and the parks. These are the places I truly love to go to for daily walks.
Wow. Just wow!
Thank you God!
Signing my lease with my new landlady.
Noemi told me later that she had invested nearly €15,000 in the renovation, and that her tax advisor told her she had invested too much. That she should have bought much cheaper furniture, carpets, and had less of a high-quality kitchen and appliances installed.
He also told her she should be charging at least twice what she was charging and so many other places were going for a lot more that were much smaller and older.
Noemi also told me that only 5 minutes prior to her calling me, a prospective tenant she had been working with for two days suddenly decided he didn't want the place and would not be signing the contract. At the very last minute, he pulled out.
She was so upset about this, because she just wanted to be "done" with the unit, and just get back to her life.
This is why when she saw my application, she just wanted an appropriate renter, and I was available immediately for a viewing. When I showed up, and we got along, and I appreciated all her hard work and told her so, she offered me the place, no questions asked whatsoever about my employment or activities!
And that is how it works. God. Miracles. Timing. Divine intervention, whatever you want to call it. It works every time.
My new keys!
So although I continue to learn how to really strengthen my faith, it's situations like these that show me, as clear as day, that I really shouldn't ever worry about things. Just stay on the path and move and act when it's time to.
Sure I had inner work to do, and I'm glad I did it. I feel so much more 'entitled' now, to basic things that so many others take for granted I believe... security and a home.
I have those now, in a place I absolutely love, and I simply cannot stop saying "Thank You God!" for all the things I have in this place, and how much I love it.
Whenever I am working with my clients, I simply share my own ways of creating a life I love to assist them in believing they can create miracles for themselves as well.
This entire journey of traveling, temporary housing, and the exploration of myself and the world beyond the US, has grown me so much.
I can now see such value in this stability, and it is just in time for all the festivities of Oktoberfest once again. I'm all set up to start my language classes again tomorrow, and pretty soon, the holidays will be on our doorstep. Yay!
With this new stability, I will also be able to create and give more ways for you to learn and grow in your own life, be it through free podcasts, blogging, group work or beyond into private one-on-one. Everyone has their own favorite flavor, you know?
I am sending you massive loving guidance from within, and a reminder that you too can create a world of wonder and miracles, by maintaining and prioritizing, your connection to Source.
Much Love and Many Blessings,