We’ve already missed this one in Abilene, 1929
Courtesy of Daily Yonder
If you have read this blog for long, or any of my Chautauqua posts, you know that for the last couple of years each Fall we have taken a small group to Ecuador for a week of adventure and conversation surrounding life, freedom, happiness and investing. We call it a Chautauqua, an old Native American word that Robert M. Pirsig, the author of “Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance,” translates loosely as
“…an old-time series of popular talks intended to edify and entertain, improve the mind and bring culture and enlightenment to the ears and thoughts of the hearer.”
Both times now we’ve attracted an incredibly diverse and fascinating group of people. Almost everyone has described it as one of the (if not the) best weeks of their lives. To give you a flavor of what goes on, here’s my recap of the last one: Lighting Strikes Again.
Photo by Nick, Chautauqua alumni 2014
We all know that, in reading blogs like this one, we are walking the path less traveled and frequently not understood by those in our daily lives. But for this one week we get to be surrounded by others who “get it.” The fact we get to do this in a stunning beautiful country while staying at Hacienda Cusin, a gorgeous old estate and monastery built in the Andes mountains in 1602, still leaves me a bit slack-jawed.
And this time I also get to escape, if only for a week, a bit of the sometimes brutal New Hampshire winter. WooHoo!
As before, we’ll have four speakers:
Cheryl Reed is the owner and founder of Above the Clouds Retreats and one of the most relentlessly happy people I’ve ever met. Here’s a story:
The son of her farm worker borrows her truck and promptly rolls it. Her response to this very poor young man: “There are three responsible parties for this. You, who rolled the truck. I, for letting you take it. God, for permitting it to happen. You will pay a third of the cost (bartered in his labor as he had no money), I will pay for a third and I will see what I can do about getting the final third from God.”
This delivered with a smile, a wink and a laugh. Clearly, Cheryl is someone I can learn from. Maybe you can, too. Her talk is Following Your Bliss.
Paula Pant is a journalist, globetrotter, entrepreneur, investor who has traveled to 32 countries. She’s her own boss and lives on her own terms, and she’s figured out how to live and work anytime, anywhere in the world. She writes the wonderful and wonderfully named blog Afford Anything
Her talk is Three Rebellious Roads to Financial Independence. If you’re ready, Paula can teach you how to shatter limits and maximize your life.
I’m proud to call her a friend.
Tyler Lewke is new to me. So new, in fact, this is the only picture of him I could find. Here’s what Paula has to say about him:
“…a rebel who blogs at the crossroads between capitalism and spirituality. He’s a corporate CEO who believes that “loving kindness … creates profit.” He’s the offspring between a genius scientist and a hippie (literally and symbolically), he hasn’t had an employer since age 17, and he blogs daily about the intersection between “hard core capitalism” and “contemplative service to others.” Tyler will speak about finding sustainable happiness in work and life.”
OK, I’m intrigued! How about you? Looking forward to meeting and hanging out with you, Tyler!
Then, of course, there’s me.
Here at jlcollinsnh we discuss mostly why you need F-you money and how to grow yours. In our conversations, Cheryl and I agree that money for the sake of money is almost completely uninteresting. But it is a wonderful tool. Financial independence allows greater freedom and range in the pursuit of happiness. That’s why my topic at the Chautauqua will be How to Harness the World’s Most Powerful Wealth Building Tool.
So these are your speakers and hosts. But unlike many events, we won’t be just getting up, giving our talks and disappearing. We’ll be hanging out with you all week. This is part of what makes these Chautauquas so special for us and for the attendees.
You’ll also have a chance to select two of us for private one-on-one-sessions. Each will be an hour-long and you’ll have a chance to discuss whatever issues are most pressing for you. To have time for these is one key reason why we limit attendance. While we’ll try to accommodate everybody’s first and second choices, slots will be allocated on a first-come-first-served basis. So if you want me, or if you want to be sure not to get stuck with me, you’ll want to sign up early.
We’ll also be exploring a bit of Ecuador together. We’ll:
- Visit the Equator
- Take a boat trip on Lake Cuicocha
- Enjoy a beautiful presentation of Folkloric Dance
- And work together on a community service project giving back a bit to the local people.
Speaking of giving back, as with every Chautauqua, a full 10% of all profits will go to the The Project One Corner.
You’ll also have free time to visit the famous Otavalo Market, horseback ride, tour a rose plantation, paraglide, hike the mountains or just chill out at the Hacienda.
For more insights check out Paula’s excellent post. I especially like her take on who should come and, importantly, who should NOT come.
And Tyler’s: Ready for Adventure?
If you decide you should, and I hope you do, here is the registration page.
As before, attendance is limited. In the past we’ve been able to accommodate 25 attendees. But because Hacienda Cusin is in demand we were unfortunately not able to secure as many rooms as before. This means we’ll only be able to accommodate ~15-20 attendees, depending on how many room-sharing couples sign up. So this will be an even more intimate gathering.
December 26 – January 4 I plan to be in Los Angeles. I’ve never done a “reader meet-up” before, but I think it would be great fun. Maybe a small group of us meet for lunch and hang out for awhile? If you are interested let me know and, of course, I’ll need a volunteer(s) to select a venue and organize it.
LA update: Looks like we’ll have two reader meet-ups and I’ll be visiting a group at Dreamworks:
If you read my post Tuft & Needle: A better path to sleep and have an interest, you’ll want to read the Addendum just added to it.