"I walk a lot, dance a bit and do a smidge of yoga. Paddling 60+ kilometers down a river on a SUP felt like mission impossible, and camping - that's something other people do! This whole adventure was very much out of my comfort zone. But my heart and soul were fractured and exhausted, and the lure of freedom from the hamster wheel of my life was too intoxicating to turn down. With Candace reassuring me she would make a 'wild bird' out of me, we turned up the tunes and headed to the Orange.
The trip was well organised and I felt safe in the experience of both Candace and our guide. Our guide lead us in a boat packed to the hilt with all the necessities; which included a single change of warm clothes, cool clothes and a sleeping bag. We had input into the simple but very tasty menu; and very quickly we were all packed up and ready to paddle. Both Candace and our guide were fun and supportive and it was with a light heart that I clambered (knees first) onto my sturdy SUP, and headed down the river. The stillness and beauty of the surroundings (and lack of any mobile connectivity) are balm to the busy mind. I thought I might get bored doing the same thing over and over again; until I realized we'd been paddling for hours; and I hadn't thought about anything. A pure moment of just being in my body.
It was a trip of magnificent firsts:
I DID paddle all of those KM's on a SUP; and through rapids too; sometimes on my knees, belly or even backwards; but I did it!
I slept under the stars on a slab of rock in the brightness of the moon. It was so much more comfortable than I thought, and I even got hot coffee served to me in "bed" first thing in the morning.
I quieted my mind to delicious stillness with morning yoga and meditation. I even managed a very short, and slightly wonky, full wheel.
I danced madly in the desert sun with brightly colored fans that we turned into an exquisite photo shoot,
I drank beer for breakfast.
I lost myself in combing the banks for the perfect semi precious stone to bring home.
And the list goes on and on. It was the adventure of a lifetime. A privilege in this mad and rushed world most of us call home. Candace created this wonderful, safe and trusted space for me to learn to slow down, smell the river lilies and explore my own limitations. I came off the river so much stronger; and wilder; and happier. I did fly!"
"I never did SUP before and was not sure what to expect, all I knew is that I wanted to get out of my routine and daily issues. I submerge in the breath-taking scenery with rocky mountains with the most beautiful
unique shades, sunsets with all the pastel colors, birds, fishes and wildlife along the way. At night the magical surprise….. go and find out for yourself. I found that SUP is my transport of choice, gently working out my body as I propel in this magnificent river, connect with myself, my surrounding and the people in the trip. Feelings of freedom, going back to my roots and finding my inner child having fun in this incredible soul adventure. Hosted by this amazing caring woman who knows exactly how to conduct this trip ensuring each and all of us gets the most of it. Yoga in the morning, great nutritious food, sleeping under an ocean of stars and waking up for another amazing day with the warmth of morning sun rays. Although the trip ended, this nourishing experience stays forever in my soul. I will definitely come back. Believe in Magic..."
Paula Giusti, Argentina
So where to begin with my thankings....
The Orange is one of those soul spaces that knows my true name and has called me gently throughout my life. She has gifted me so very very many things, rivers offer abundance to the land, life giving water in motion, her very existence is a blessing. Every time I had the opportunity to go to the river it was in a very masculine frame, I was there to work, it was physically very demanding and since there are fewer female guides you are mostly surrounded by male colleagues. Your trip gave me the opportunity to dance in those beloved waters for the first time, to give offerings in the way most natural for me without having to feel self conscious or try and hide away. I got to walk up the most magical river bed surrounded by the mountains of rock that make me feel home and pray out loud for the healing and upliftment of all beings. I got to run over that rocky sandy wonderland, in a game of never really putting your weight in your feet, springing from one point of contact to the next. I sincerely can't remember the last time I was inspired to run that wasn't an emergency. I had the opportunity to watch the bats at dusk, listen to the cheeky otters at night and observe our planet turn as the heavens shifted over that great big witches rock. Yoh that spot was powerful. I got to bathe naked in the river. Girl, I got bathe naked in the river right in front of camp, not needing to walk out and away as though it was inappropriate. That was such a gift, the allowance for body...Read more
Candace and these retreats magnetically pull in women from around the globe who are wild birds at heart. A beautiful part of the whole experience is how each woman is a part of creating the retreat just by being there and showing up. The space to be yourself with complete strangers who then become darling friends and then sisters is what I didn't know I needed and is my biggest gift from Candace and my time paddling the incredible Orange River.
So much love, respect and admiration,
Jamie Hood, US
'I am not quite sure how she does it but I came off her table really bouncing and full of life ready to take on the world. The combination of intuitive and visionary body work and deep massage as well as an observation into self makes a potent and heady combination that works deeply to clear wounding one is often not even aware existed. World class bodywork with a little something for the mind to feed on too. Deeply nourishing intuitively working on whatever needed to be worked on.'
Adam Suzman, Author of Buddha Bratz
'Thanks for all you have done. The willingness to listen and then use it as a guide to how you approach your sessions.'
'Candace is a beautiful intuitive free-spirit. She creates a safe and accepting space where her healing touch is both provocative and calming. She serves with passion and empathy and I felt her light shine deep into me. I left her session feeling inspired and joyful.'
'Candace is such an amazing soul. I've been to a few similar practitioners before meeting Candace, and not to undermine anyone but the experience I had with her was unlike any other. A real gem, who I highly recommend . Besides skill, what I love most about Candace is her sincerity and love. Thank you Candace'
'There are often times of reflection that my heart smiles when I think of the enormous gift you gave me That day( freeing me from my mental fears and shackles)
Sharing that time with you was just the biggest epiphany. You set my soul free and rekindled my inner woman to run with the wolves once more.'
'I can't believe how different I feel, how is this possible?'
'I know what belongs to him, what belongs to me, I am able to speak my truth now with no anxiety, it's like I've gone back to when I was 21 and I knew who I was...'
'You helped me release a river of sadness I couldn't seem to touch on my own'
'I feel like a Unicorn....'
'I now see how far I was from myself, it's brought me home to my body...'