Michigan – United States
When I first heard about ayahuasca I knew it was something meant for me to experience. I had never travelled outside of the US before so I was very nervous. I knew that I wanted an experienced Shaman, someone that had not just trained for a couple of years to jump into a booming industry. My research lead me to Kawsay.
Here I found Don Romolo, Don Winister, and Huachumero William. The combined experience of over a hundred years of first-hand knowledge in addition to previous generations of knowledge was, in my opinion, unmatched. I felt my case to be very unusual and wanted the expertise to understand more of what I was being called to do and a deeper understanding of my experiences of the past. And so I began my adventure.
I began by booking my trip. After I secured my dates, William reached out to me. We went over a lot of information. He stayed in very close contact with me throughout the whole process. William and Milagros took care of all the details for me from beginning to end. They booked my hotel stay at the La Casa Moray. It was, what I would consider, the most beautiful hotel in the area at a discounted price. The hotel picked me up from the airport and offered many amenities. After my arrival (and some much-needed sleep and a swim), I met our group at a local restaurant for lunch and had a wonderful time getting to know the people I would be spending the next week with. When lunch was over with we took a trip through the Belen market. Once we were done at the market, we all got on a boat and were transported upriver to our retreat.
The site was beautiful. The beds were comfortable. The bathrooms were clean. The food was tasty (as tasty as an ayahuasca diet can be lol). The company was the best I had kept in a long time, and the support staff was the most loving and nurturing staff you could imagine. It was not required but I tipped them well and hugged them hard with much love and gratitude before I left. (FYI- tips were not required for any staff but after my stay, I tipped all the staff and Shamans. It is true that some things you can not put a price on, but I tipped anyways knowing that there should be some kind of personal exchange with those who willingly give to us without expectations. So I gave a little extra and found the experience to be completely worth it.)
During our rest days, we did a lot of fun things! I spent a lot of time bonding with others in our group. This experience alone was much worth the trip. We took a trip to a local village and a trip to monkey island. These trips helped open my eyes to why we are being called to the Amazon in the first place. She needs our help and our awareness as to what is going on in this world. She has so much to share and we need to protect her in any way we can. (During one of the ceremonies she showed me how she is growing weary of having to clean up after her children and feels unappreciated after all she does for her children. This was where she began to weep, as she wept the rains rolled in and for that ceremony, it rained) -true story.
The ceremonies were everything I imagined and more. I watched the first hand of some amazing healings. I was in awe when the Shamans could describe the visions one saw with incredible accuracy because they truly are there with you protecting you on your journey. The Shamans were full of so much love it is hard to even put into words. Make no mistake Mother Ayahuasca will make you work for what is needed, but it was so nice to know someone was there to guide me, explain things, and protect me. When you truly feel loved and secure you are able to focus better on the task at hand. It also makes the healings that much more effective.
I have included just a few tips that I learned from my trip for those of you who do not travel much or have never been to the Amazon.
– When packing soaps please use biodegradable simple soaps and simple toothpaste without Fluoride. Our soaps find their way back to water sources.
– Plan on bottled water only
– Everyone in Iquitos is super helpful especially at the airport and outside of hotels do not be afraid to say “no thank you.”
– Taxis are the mode of transportation- google Iquitos taxis these videos will give you a good idea of what to expect. My biggest learning experience was knowing the average cost of transportation to and from places and tipping taxi drivers (this is their livelihood but at the same time you don’t want to be charged unfairly not knowing the
– Brush up on your Spanish.
– With any travel, it is a good idea to keep your Id and valuables secured to your body.
– Most of all are kind and courageous and remember we are all connected in ways most couldn’t possibly imagine.