How I Turned My Marijuana into Spiritual Medicine

Empath Education, Existentialism

For a long time now cannabis has been highly stigmatized as a schedule 1 drug by the federal government and citizens of the world alike. Now, as many states have begun to consider the plant recreational those who have been using the miracle herb as a spiritual teacher and healer can begin to speak out about their experiences in hopes of helping others access the mysticism of the plant.

At this point many might think, we’ve been getting high since we were 15 and I haven’t become any more spiritual? That is because this wasn’t the aim in using cannabis for this generation. Setting an intention before enjoying any type of cannabis will withdraw the spiritual teacher from the plant and can create a metaphysically sacred experience. The key to transforming the experience of “getting high” into one of ethereal meaning lies with setting an intention for the sesh.

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The History of Cannabis as a Spiritual Teacher

In the ancient Eastern world cannabis was regarded as a valuable tool by many respected individuals across various cultures. Japanese Shinto culture has long used cannabis to drive away evil spirits. Shinto belief relies that purity and evil cannot exist alongside each other so they crafted small sticks made with hemp fibers called the gohei. In religious and formal ceremonies practitioners often wore hemp robes and the gohei was waved in front of people to purify them and their space. Similarly the ancient Iranian people regarded cannabis as the “good narcotic”, referring to the plant in the Venidad in a story where two mortals were sent to the heavens where they drank a cup of bhang. With this intoxicating cup they were shown the highest mysteries of the universe. They also relayed that hemp smoke was also known to cause “shamanic ecstasy”.


The prophet of Islam Mohammed prohibited the use of alcohol strictly while placing no restrictions on the consumption of cannabis. Medieval Arab doctors called cannabis kannab and Muslims have often referred to the herb as “the Holy Plant”. Sufis and Muslim mystics utilized hashish to appreciate the nature of Allah and stimulate their mystical consciousness. The deeply spiritual Sufi people believed that cannabis delivered deep insight into oneself which helps open the mind to a spiritual awakening. Chinese culture regarded cannabis as a “liberator of sin” and were taught hemp cultivation in 28th century BC by Shen Yung, the father of Chinese medicine. Taoists in 1st Century AD China added hemp to their incense as a means to reaching immortality reporting a mystic exaltation.


Within Southern Central Africa cannabis has long been held as a sacred plant that holds the complete universal protection. The famous religion of Rastafarianism, established in the late 1920’s,  is heavily influenced by African culture and the use of cannabis to introspectively awaken oneself to the teachings of God. Rastafarians believe that smoking ganja will burn corruption out of the human heart while also being a solid symbol of peace and friendship. They are also the most modern spiritual sect that still utilizes cannabis as a vehicle to understanding our human relationship with a higher power. For centuries cannabis was used as a pathway to a relationship with a spiritual realm, so why is it that now cannabis is simply a party stimulant often compared to alcohol?

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Setting Intention is the Key

The reason that we are so focused on the mind-altering party effects of cannabis and not the mind-expanding spiritual effects is because we are living in a sick society. Cannabis is now recreational in many states because politicians have realized there is profit to gain from the plant, but in this shift I fear that we are losing the beautifully medicinal power of the healing herb. Cultural influences of cannabis movies and other relevant pop culture have reflected a message of what a stoner is onto the plant which makes most assume that cannabis is just for the lazy video gamer eating cheetos in his mother’s basement. This has pretty much made the door to spiritual awakening for those that don’t have an innate ability to partake in an intentional session like the door to the Kingdom Under the Mountain in The Hobbit.  


The truth is that even those who sometimes get super baked and lock themselves to the couch for a couple of hours were capable of utilizing that sesh to reach an enlightened state. History shows that cannabis has been a strong tool for spiritual leaders across the Eastern world, so what is the difference? Well, before smoking we must infuse the session with intention, invite the spirit realm into the cannabis before partaking. An interview published on Erowid cites the analogy that cannabis is much like driving a car. When we get in the car, the engine is running but that doesn’t necessarily dictate where we’re going; this is the same concept as spiritually medicating with cannabis. Although we’ve inhaled the powerful smoke or vapors and started our engines, where we go with that high is up to our own minds. The root to all spiritual endeavors is already embedded within our own minds, waiting for us to access it. When we’re smoking, if our intention is to simply feel some specific feeling then that is what the plant will give to us. However, if we can set an intention for that session of spiritual awakening and visions into ourselves then we can access a side of the plant that has been dead from our generation for many years, and in turn perhaps we’ll be able to heal a wounded culture.


Have you experimented with cannabis in a spiritual way? I find it beneficial in my connection to Shiva through yoga practice and my ability to quiet the mind in my meditation practice. What is your experience?


Great Tips for Mercury Retrograde

Empath Education, Existentialism, Relationships

Originally posted on Witches Of The Craft®: ? ? ? ? ? Mercury Retrograde Dos and Don’ts Keep moving forward while Mercury moves backward By Maria DeSimone Videos, Mercury Retrograde, Astrology There is one golden rule when it comes to Mercury Retrograde phases. Interestingly enough, it’s grammatical. If you can commit this simple tenet to…

via Mercury Retrograde Dos and Don’ts — ravenhawks’ magazine

The Bravery of Being Uncomfortable

Existentialism, how to

I feel like I’ve been uncomfortable for years now, since leaving Southern California. I’m just not really good at being in Arizona, it doesn’t suit me. But in the title when I say uncomfortable I don’t just mean in this sense, but to go deeper into uncomfortable. I’m almost talking about instigating the awkwardness. Not in a malicious way but in a way that keeps one true to themselves. In the wake of some serious tragedies in the African American community, Native American community and LGBTQIA this year it’s important that we understand the gravity of what it means to make people uncomfortable in hopes for social change.

When those horrible murders of black men in America happened one after the other after the other I began to feel like I needed to be doing something. Obviously I can’t go and change the world alone, but I can do my part to change my sphere of influence in hopes of that change going viral one day. It isn’t the responsibility of people of color to teach us white people about how to understand them, it’s the responsibility of awake white people to teach each other. Which is where being uncomfortable comes in, because most white people don’t believe that they’re being racist when calling Native Americans “Indians” or rooting for the Washington Redskins. They don’t understand that responding to a black man being murdered in cold blood by a police officer with a video about “How to Properly Deal With Police Officers” is racist. The only way for them to learn is if us awake folk rise up and say something.

I want you to know that I’m not brave enough to speak up most times, but I’m writing this in hopes that I will be eventually. The reason that I don’t want to mention anything when I hear a phrase that just makes me cringe to my bones is because I don’t want to be uncomfortable by their uncomfortableness. Perhaps that’s my white privilege, because I’m pretty sure we deserve to be uncomfortable until social change is made. So go out there awkward tribe, and stir up the racist stew until we begin to teach each other. I think that it’s the only way.


I’m Pretty Sure I Suck At Relationships

Existentialism, Lifestyle, Relationships

Seriously don’t “awww” it’s true. I think I can actually be kind of an asshole. I mean, obviously I’ve ‘failed’ at some romantic relationships before I met Josh. But even friendships I’m kind of the worst. I think about people all the time and cherish them in my heart but for some reason I’ve always kept myself at a distance from people by not keeping contact regularly or making the time for them that was well deserved. For this reason I find myself really dissecting what makes a Cara in a friendship and a romantic partner so that I can be sure to give good Cara when at all possible for the people that I love. It’s been a prevalent topic on my mind for many moons now but until today I didn’t have the vehicle with which to talk about it. Before I dive right into the story I’ll tell you, I’m a nester, I love my house and being in it and feeling the energy of my space. It’s my most favorite.

However, I also love to travel and go out into the world and leave my beautiful home. Before I do I generally clean the dishes in the sink and change the sheets because what is better you guys, than coming home from foreign spaces and nestling into a crisp bed with no worries about all the dishes that you have to do? It is divine. So when I left for 9 days knowing that cowboyfriend would be coming home 7 days before me I tried to instill in him the importance of coming home to a clean house with some *wink wink* obvious nudging. Instead of the easy wash the dishes, change the sheets, this little nugget attempted something much more grandiose. He forfeited his office to me and put all of my favorite art and gemstones and instruments into the room. When I walked into my home after 9 days of missing my kittens and all of the warm energy of the house and everything was different, I didn’t react exactly how he had thought I would. All I could see was that every ounce of me was removed from the bedroom and Josh’s things had taken over. I was devastated and blinded from the surprise of it all and unfortunately the blindness also covered up the nice thing that this amazing man had done for me.

Luckily after the initial reveal he had to go feed the horses and I was left in the house staring, thinking, laying with my head under the bed. I began to get unnecessarily upset about this spontaneous redecorating that I had no say in and then I had a big realization. Josh loves me. He would never try to do something that would make me upset, his intention was to give me a gift. And I basically stomped all over it right along with his enormous and squishy heart. So I stopped for a beat and took some deep, meaningful breaths. It’s easy if you are also a big squishy heart haver to now think that you should roll over and accept things as they are, this is as big of a mistake as the aggressive hatred that I expressed at first glance. So instead of needing to be either/or I sat down with my beloved cowboyfriend and told him that I loved his intention of creating a space for me to work, I made sure that he knew he was appreciated. But to keep my stake feeling worthwhile to the partnership I also asked him if we could change small decorative things so that I felt our home reflected us both.


He agreed and we both sat in silence with our egos trying to figure out if we did or did not like the way that they just took that little blow.

I suppose the super obvious meaning of this ridiculous and somewhat silly blow up is that we compromised and in the end the compromise is the only fair option between two parties with valid arguments. But at a deeper level I feel like I accessed a new level of truly being a partner, I was able to objectively look at our situation while taking into account what I can assume as his subjective view. All three aspects are necessary in a relationship because the childish ego sometimes calls to us to make a big deal when in reality we’re missing the bigger picture. When accepting another human being as your partner you’re accepting that your souls have become a ven diagram, some of you and some of them will be squished together in your coupleness. It is up to you as you lay the foundations of your relationship which parts of you remain yours alone and which you’d like to share, as you learn your ego will naturally pick up and go right along with you. But do expect little blow ups along the way as the ego decides exactly where it fits in your relationship. Happy loving, may it be shiny and glorious.


All the Yoga Everywhere, Always

Existentialism, Religion, Yoga

Yoga has been intertwined with my life for the last 10 years but it wasn’t until February  of Screen Shot 2016-06-14 at 7.38.56 AMthis year that I started intently practicing every single day. Before then I would take time in my life to fly off of the rails and have existential crises where yoga was no longer something I made time for. Practice every day makes me stronger and allows me to achieve more advanced levels of posture. But what it also does is give me the ability to maintain joy, gratitude and balance in my mind & life even in the toughest moments.

As a former athlete, my practice was a way to stay in shape when I couldn’t run, lift or cross train because of my injury. After a couple of years I got more interested in the spiritual and scientific aspects of yoga in my life. From meditation & breathing to Ayurvedic eating to our fabulously interesting chakra system; it was all absolutely fascinating to me. There are so many intertwined aspects of yoga that I could confuse you and myself with, but instead there is one simple idea that I’d like you to take away from this post. Yoga practice teaches us how to find balance in breath, how to find stillness in motion and how to create a fantastic realm of calm despite the storm.

I’ve been wanting to explore this idea on the blog for awhile but I wasn’t able to get the words out, until this week that is. For some reason this week has been the worst, but it’s only Tuesday. Yesterday, for no reason, I was completely and horribly angry right at the getScreen Shot 2016-06-14 at 7.38.40 AM.png go of waking up. Sometimes there is something that sets me off, like an excessively dirty kitchen or some animal vomit to clean up that really grinds my gears when I stumble out of bed to make my coffee. That wasn’t the case yesterday, it was just one of those days that my intense empathic soul needed to flush out anger it had accrued over time as I sponge emotions off of passersby. I was angry ALL DAY except while I was in a gentle yoga class and while I was helping out with kids yoga camp. These hours spent were full of gratitude, excitement and wonder; but this bliss isn’t only accessible while you’re in a studio or on your mat. The moments we spend in the studio or on the mat are points of training for all of the times that we need to access pure unadulterated bliss in our daily waking lives.

Today I woke up after about 10 days trying to get my bills across different states and credit unions all settled up for the month to find that I incurred an unnecessary overdraft fee. You know what I did you guys? I cried. I cried so hard, with open mouth breathing and everything. I cried like this right on the phone with the sweet, gentle Southern woman who works for PayPal. Starting off the first moments of your day with a rollercoaster of disappointment, regret and open mouthed sobbing doesn’t generally prove a recipe for success. But I am confident that if I’m kind to myself, if I show gratitude in the right places and if I get on my mat for at least 20 minutes; I’ll be able to find my balance again amidst the sea of bleh my emotions have me sailing on this week. Because yoga can be my constant, my mat can be my reset button. Every moment can be yoga. Only then can we learn to understand the deep facets of our mind and step away from these days of rage or sorrow to look at the feelings themselves from an objective perspective. We can access our witness body to observe our emotional body and engage with the triggers instead of the effects. This is necessary in order to grow and shape ourselves into better humans through our practice.

This is how we heal. This is how yoga heals. This is how we heal ourselves with yoga.


Don’t judge a cake by it’s frosting.


I baked a cake the other day, it had been awhile. Ever since cupcakes went mainstream I’ve just used them as a go-to when a friend’s birthday rolls around or just when I feel like eating something downright cakey. This time I couldn’t find my muffin tin and had made some perfect cupcake batter so I figured, what the heck, let’s take it full cake on this one.

As the cakes cooled I whipped up some epic dairy free strawberry and chocolate frosting and started to get really excited. After all, what former fat kid doesn’t get excited when there’s a bowl of frosting sitting in front of them and the smell of fresh cake emanating from the oven. I was so excited in fact that I flipped the cake over too soon and turned it into a mountain of failure crumbs instead of the gorgeous, sharp edged cake that I had imagined delicately smearing oodles of frosting onto.

Sitting there, staring at the disaster of a cake that I had created I felt deflated. I just looked at it as it cooled thinking about what a failure I was and what a failure this cake was but I would still frost it because I had created a perfect consistency of frosting and something like that just can’t go to waste. I frosted the cake and tried my hardest to make it look somewhat presentable using the sugar laden glue that I had whipped up to hold sliding pieces in place. Frankencake. That is what I had created in my kitchen that day. It was hideous. The strawberry and chocolate frosting had started to become molten goo in one abstract, unattractive brownish color and the whole thing was sort of tilting off to one side.

So I cut into it, I cut a slice and I put the little triangle onto a plate. I looked down, sunk my fork in and guess what? It was still delicious despite what my already established view of cake had deemed as ugliness. My cake had been through some trauma that adjusted it’s appearance but there was still cake on the inside and frosting on the outside. Despite all of the trials that have made my cake absolutely hideous to look at from a subjective perspective, all of the effort that went into the creation of the cake still paid off. It still tasted like delicious, light and fluffy vanilla cake drowning in decadent frostings.

It just goes to show you, you can’t judge a cake by it’s frosting. And you can’t judge a person by your own perception of personness. We’re all delicious.

Edification of My Divide Between Religion & Spirituality

Existentialism, Religion

Religion is weird, but spirituality is important. At least to me. My journey to religion has been a long one that started with defiance for the sake of fitting in with other rebellious teens. After life threw me through the ringer a bit and I ended up living with my parents after college, after being on my own for 7 years. I was disheartened to say the least and the last year or so before that time had sort of turned my soul into a battered piece of garbage. This is when I walked into a Christian church and started my investigation of Christianity, faith and God as he appears in the chapel. Those first months that fellowship with happy people delighted in their Lord rebuilt my spirit from the ground up. I am positive that if I never went to church and met those women, that my life would not be the way that it is today.

I’m writing this because at the moment I’m having a bit of a spiritual existential crisis.
And yes, all existential crises get a bit spiritual, but this one is based on the foundations of my religious life so I have deemed it as such. You see, I go to Christian church and I absolutely love the ability to share with others my faith in God; but I’m pretty sure I’m not a Christian and that has been making me realize that I don’t belong in the chapel even if it feels comfy sometimes. You see, I believe in all religion. I’m sure some of the crazy ones might all on the very outskirts of my theorizing but I’m pretty positive that all religions started as a divine thought from the true God & Goddess. In this thought a person was given a grand idea: GOD IS LOVE. After that, I believe that religions were shaped in relation to social, ecological, economical, etc. circumstances of the time period and region in which they were created. With this  and my deep studies of philosophy combined I have decided that I need to take hold of my worship for the good of my own faith and stop falling into something that has been created by another.

I spend most of my religious studies in Buddhism, Wicca & Pagan tradition and Christianity. The latter two generally combat each other, mostly Christian faith telling me not to practice my earth spirit studies and generally not the other way around. As I dive into studying the bible and what it means to me, I just don’t think it’s fair of me to go to church anymore. Nature is my church and since we live on 80 acres adjacent to a national forest I am always praising God(des). I will still read the bible, I will still pray and I will never stop believing in a divine spirit. But I don’t think that one omnipresent man created the Earth, that was definitely science. I’m also pretty positive that astrology, diviScreen Shot 2016-05-26 at 12.57.53 PM.pngnation and herbal work have some sort of meaning to humanity and aren’t the work of the devil. Also I certainly don’t think that yoga was started to “worship a penis god”. So I will keep on being my own weird self and talking to God about it until I reach some sort of understanding with that great big spirit in the sky.

Anyways, I had to get that off of my heart, my chest has been heavy these past weeks. Do you ponder deeply on the existence of man and the metaphysics behind creation?

A Strange Trip to the Chiropractor

Body Image, Existentialism, Yoga

Healthcare hasn’t been readily available to me since I turned 26, I probably could have been more proactive but I really didn’t trust Western medicine and decided I’d instead turn to herbs and Eastern medicine to solve my issues. At the end of the day, whichever side of the spectrum that you lean towards should be balanced out with the other. But anyways, the reason that I write this post is because I’ve been consistently let down by doctors. From the dentist charging me for a deep cleaning that I didn’t need when I was 19 to the veterinarian that gouged me for $170 of steroid shots that my kitten didn’t need to get better; my trust in doctors has been fully revoked.

I still had a shred of ability to believe in their wily ways when I walked into a chiropractor appointment last week. I had to visit to renew my cannabis card through the state of Arizona and was really excited because with all of the yoga that I do I know that there is something bad going on in there. We had a nice long talk about my background in athletics, my hip injury that took me out of the game and my current aches and pains. Well, I’m guessing in relation to my biceps but he told me immediately to stop working out. That I needed to stop doing yoga altogether and just go on long walks. This made me really, really bummed. I feel convinced that he gave me this advice and called me “big” and a “maniac” consistently throughout my appointment to reiterate that I have a muscular build, which I’m already very aware of.

Perhaps he’s from a different generation. Perhaps I am being too sensitive. Or perhaps I missed an opportunity to call a misogynistic old man out on his oppressive medical advice based on his opinions of what a woman’s body should look like. Don’t get me wrong, his assessment of my hip injury being related to a spinal issue that has caused sciatica was dead on. But I will never go back to him because he could not remove his own subjective life from the session that we had, and that is un called for. I was offended and I share because maybe someone just like him is reading, and realizing that they’re offending when before these words they had no idea. Maybe a person is reading this and now has the courage to stand up for themselves and their right to have their body. I guess the moral of the story is that when it comes to other people’s bodies you should just stay out of it.

Flabby Arms: A Tale of Love & Loss


It’s true, I’ve ALWAYS hated my big flabby arms. Since I was young I’ve been attempting to cut all of the fat off of my body and be a perfect 10. I realize of course that this is a bit of an overstretch for an 8 year old girl but I’m guessing anyone who thinks that didn’t grow up in Orange County, CA. Being skinny was a life goal and I often lamented so whole heartedly that my little girl body wasn’t skinny like the other girls. You see, I’m built like a work horse; I come from thick stock. Once I hit high school this need to be thin only escalated to unhealthy eating and exercising behavior, things that would make me cringe if I knew my daughter was partaking. Whether I was working out drunk in the sauna at the gym or trying not to eat for as long as possible until I only saw spots; I wasn’t doing things the right way.

For the first time in my days I am cutting the fat frunnamedom my arms and revealing the beautiful tools that lay underneath. I am a natural athlete and my arms are now reflecting that, even though they are more buff than limbs of models or actresses. I have dimples (the good kind this time) and am seeing results in definition that I have never experienced. But this is bringing up a whole new slew of weird conversations. Cowboyfriend, the sweetest man that I’ve ever known, said this exact quote to me,

“Your arms are going to be bigger than mine, and I want you to know that I’m OK with it. But I need you to know if you’re OK with it.”

You guys, I’m OK with it. I’m not building my muscle I’m shaving off fat and seeing what is going on under there. Last weekend my father informed me that I’m built like his side of the family which means that I have to avoid working out my arms. But why? If this is almost like a super power for our genetic line, why must I stop. Because society. UGH. The thing is I’m not bodybuilding, I’m not bulking up; I’m just being myself. 

Society decided sometime way before I was even around that women should be weak waifs that never spoke their mind. Well we probably all know now that I rarely shut up but my struggle with my body comes from the external world infiltrating my mind, that’s not fair! Women of the world, remember that you were built a specific way, trying to smash your epic body into a box that contains an idea of what size a woman should be will only make you miserable and make you hate yourself. I am going to keep exercising and keep feeling good about myself NO MATTER how big my arms get because this is how my body looks when I’m HEALTHY. Remind yourself, everyone, that it doesn’t matter what anyone says, even that little voice in your head telling you to lose just 10 more lbs to feel comfortable. Stop looking to the future, your body is all around you right now… learn to love it in the present and only then will results come in the future.

Self Love Happens One Step At A Time


My battle with self image has been a really long one. I’ve always nit-picked my body in the mirror and compared myself constantly to everyone around me including the heavily photoshopped images we are all constantly lapping up in the mass media. My weight has fluctuated and my journey with exercise has led me to some very unhealthy places, until recently.  I’ve dabbled in a lot of home workouts, classes and gym workouts. There have been times when I focused on high rep low weight lifting programs with heavy cardio. I once spent some time with Bas Rutten’s all around fighter workout regimen along with cardio (I was RIPPPEDDD). Sometimes I counted calories to a disturbing degree and sometimes I just cut out all food as much as possible to exert my own control over my weight. After years of this rollercoaster of disastrously unhealthy behavior that seemed to the outside world a girl getting in shape, I’m finally having a bit of success with my diet, exercise and a semi-regular ability to practice real self-love. In order to finally jump over my struggles with weight and my ability to be honest with my inner child I’ve had to remember but one thing: Just take it one step at a time.

I tend to work out hard and crash diet until people start to notice and give me the compliments that I thought that I was waiting for. Soon after these outpourings of love from external sources I would self sabotage and start “treating myself” to the foods that I had cast out and I would begin to skip workouts or yoga bargaining with myself that “I deserved it.” These behaviors should have shown me what I know now, but heck, life is but a journey. The reality of this is that I wasn’t searching for external approval and I didn’t even want to have the perfect body. These were just masks that I wore over the fact that I needed to take a hard look within myself and learn to say those three dreaded words. This ability to love myself was necessary in order to love my body and even to eat only until satiated. It has led me to enjoy working out as a mode to feel good and healthy instead of a dire need to be perfect. And most importantly to me and cowboyfriend, it’s inspired me to be healthy and eat just until I am satiated instead of binging on an entire pizza on a whim.

The revelation of my new life regimen came from Cowboyfriend’s oldest brother who I’ll refer to as the Entrepreneur. He had read a book entitled One Small Step Can Change Your Life by Robert Maurer and was following what the book refers to as The Kaizen Way. This philosophy in the most basic of descriptions entails that you take one small step every day towards your goals. For example, I have always wanted to tone my arms but never has a workout regimen stuck. So I made a vow on the first week to do 10 pushups a day. The next week I added two more arm workouts to target each part of the upper arm muscle. This small goal to tone my arms has turned into an entire resistance workout that targets every muscle in my body and incorporates daily runs; all possible by taking one small step a couple of months ago. Through this philosophy I’ve also begun reading again by starting with only a page per night and slowly cut out all of the sugar that I so lovingly munch on.  The belief that one small step can make a difference will put a pin in self sabotaging comparison behavior, you’ve just got to respect the journey.

I have stopped looking towards an end goal for everything that I set out to do, obviously I have an end goal but I stay way from the alluring tunnel vision. Instead one step at a time has forced me to formulate a plan with solid foundation to reach each goal. Loosening my grip on the necessity of “finishing” a task, I’m opening my consciousness to the rewards that come from daily practice. I’m focusing on the present moment instead of a future that I’m working towards, somehow this shift in my goals has allowed me to unlock progress that I’ve never experienced in my figure, my diet and my ability to look in the mirror to say “I LOVE YOU!”. And, you know what? I actually believe myself now.

I can’t always help where I am on the ride, but I sure can look around to take in as much of the scenery as possible. After all, there’s a reason that the driver took this route.