Find a Vortex ✓

December 10, 2016

My mind was all over the place when I arrived in Phoenix. I was stressed with work and deadlines and having too much to do and not enough time to do it. “The rocks have magical powers.” The driver told me on the way to Sedona, pointing out a tall, vermilion-colored rock formation in the distance called Kachina Woman, one of the known “vortexes” in Boynton Canyon. I wasn’t sure I believed him, but it was a great excuse for a hike to find out. So I woke up before the sun (4:05am, to be exact), trekked to the top of the rocks, and found a spot to sit and wait for the daylight to peek above the canyon in the distance. The very magical and appropriately named Enchantment Resort was nestled in the canyon below me, and the cliffs surrounding it were so tall and magnificent and Mars-like my mouth practically fell open in amazement. The world felt quiet and I was alone, but I didn’t totally feel alone. It was almost as though the boulders were keeping me company, like they were another presence entirely.  Is this what a vortex is? Do these rocks have magical powers? I wondered.

I spent the next few days exploring Sedona. Though the Enchantment Resort was so breathtakingly beautiful and filled with activities I hardly had to leave the property to have an adventure.

But I explored rugged back country on a Pink Jeep Tour:

Hiked across rocks like this one and felt very small..

Got a bird’s eye view of the Grand Canyon (with coffee, of course)

Sipped Chardonnay at Che Ah Chi

And indulged in the most beautiful locally sourced Asparagus Panna Cotta..

Oats and grains and spirulina, oh my!

I also swam in the pool under the bright desert moonlight, did sunrise yoga, and even meditated in a crystal grotto at Mii Amo, a destination spa inspired by the wisdom of Native American traditions and so serene I wondered how I would ever go back to New York City. I mean, look at this place, you guys:

But it wasn’t until I got on a mountain bike that I really felt the power of the rocks again. My guides name was George. He was a cool, pony-tailed 72 year old Apache Indian who didn’t look a day over 40. He gave personalized mountain biking lessons for guests of the Enchantment resort, and had experience biking some of the world’s toughest trails. Still, I was nervous to be on a mountain bike. I’d only done it once before, and the rough, dry desert terrain looked intimidating and unforgiving. “Where you look, is where you are going.” George warned, pointing at the path ahead. I nodded. I followed him up and down the narrow windy trail, dodging boulders and trees. But when I focused on a huge boulder in front of me, I panicked and fell. Ouch. “You focused on the obstacle. And you let your freak out of the box.” George informed. “Keep your freak contained. Don’t be afraid. Trust the bike. The bike can handle this terrain. Breathe.” I wiped myself off, got back on the bike, took a deep breath, and rode down the hill. I listened to the tires crunching against the rocks as I pedaled, trying to breath, trying not to look at the obstacles and trust that the bike would do what it was supposed to do if I let it. I cruised across the desert, and the air was so hot it felt like a hair dryer in my face. I kept going, and after a few minutes, I realized I was in this zone where I was looking ahead, deeply focused on the path in front of me and the rest of my brain was quiet…which doesn’t happen to me, like, ever. A few days ago my mind was filled with deadlines and worries and uncertainties, but as I rode through the rocks on a mountain bike, I was in the present, connected with the canyon around me and trusting that the bike would do what it was supposed to do if I let it. Maybe where we look really is where we are going. Maybe I should keep my freak in the box and trust that— like the bike— I can handle rough terrain, too. Or maybe the rocks really do have magical powers.