Costa Rica Travel Preparations: Linen!

In preparing to go to Costa Rica I read many travel blogs. I was looking for packing list ideas, and of course, safety precautions. Of course, it's going to be hot and humid, which is part of what I love about the tropics. (If you're a student of Ayurveda you may recognize the vata in me needing warmth and moisture!)
In preparation for the weather, I've been looking at linen. Linen is a traditional fiber used by humans for thousands of years. It comes from flax. The lovely flax plant has been used as a source of both food and fiber, using the seeds as meal and oil, and the fiber to make fabric. Flax, unlike cotton, doesn't require the use of massive amounts of pesticides, so I feel comfortable with buying linen that isn't certified organic (which is nearly impossible to find anyhow – why bother certifying something that has such a cleaner process to begin with?).
I've been collecting a few linen items at thrift stores, but a huge problem for me with shopping for linen in this way is the smell. Thrift stores like Salvation Army use a terribly strong chemical detergent. I bought a lovely bag of clothes for around $40 in the summer, mainly consisting of silk and linen items I'd been delighted to find (while wearing my mask!) and then been highly disappointed when a simple run (or seven) through the wash didn't get the clothing wearable. So I resorted to soaking them in bathtub in our solarium for days on end, and then washing them again, and airing them outside. The smell is now mostly gone, so hopefully the linen I found in the summer will be wearable for the trip.
My wedding dress (photoed above, from my marriage to Greg in 2016) is linen, consisting of actually two dresses. I realized this past summer that the cream-colored under-dress actually is a great piece on its own (photo below), particularly when we're having a 100ºF day! So I'm definitely packing that! (The over-dress is a bit heavier, so I'm leaving that at home.)
In addition, I went onto Etsy and shopped for the most economical U.S.-based shops selling linen that I could find and ordered a few more pieces. My favorite finds were Sandara Eco based in California, and Linen Simply based in Massachusetts.
My hope is that my entire bag of clothes (excepting my PACT-brand panties and socks of organic cotton) will be linen, which is lighter, wicks sweat better, and gets less smelly. Equipped with my own home-blended essential-oil clothing freshener, I should be able to lay out my clothes at night, spray them, and have them feel fresh for days.
In my reading of travel blogs I became a bit paranoid about theft for a while, but then I realized I probably don't have to worry since my path is so straight-forward. I'm only going to two locations: Philia Retreat Center, for my Completion Process Practitioner training, and then afterward, La Joya del Sol for some tropical, raw food rejuvenation. And, Lytenian is coming with me! We're finally going to have a honeymoon – in our tenth year of marriage! We'll be enjoying a week together walking paths and enjoying tropical foods! (I have two husbands. Full story here.)
Some of you might be wondering why I need Completion Process training when I already authored my own process, Perspective Alchemy. The answer is that I probably don't need the training, but I expect I will still learn a lot, gain confidence, and of course, gain the certification. I know some of you may also be thinking I don't need more confidence since I already seem so self-assured, but there is a huge difference between putting up a very convincing front and having deep, inner confidence. Beautifully, the Completion Process (and any Consciousness Alchemy, really) helps build that deep, inner confidence for both the facilitator and the participant. Not to mention, the trip is going to be so fun and validating! I will probably experience the most heart-to-heart, mind-to-mind connections of my life during this training, as the other thirty to fifty participants in the training will also be on this same healing path of being and becoming healers of bodies and consciousness itself.
On a different line of travel preparations, I tried to find a eco swimsuit for my journey. I already have some swim gear, but most of it doesn't fit well, or is sagging, or is falling apart, or falls off too easily. (The swimsuit shown above has since stopped being functional.)
I have a single swim shirt that I like but the bottoms I got at the same time (around ten years ago) fell apart. Also, the swim shirt is too short and my back got a sunburn on the lower, exposed part when I wore it to swim on the nude cruise back in February, 2018. Yes, I wore a swim shirt on a nude cruise, as shown below. (I'm photographed with a friend I made on the cruise there. Good-looking guy, huh? He was also very kind and courteous.)
To my delight, a lot of eco-friendly swim options exist now. Some companies actually clean the oceans by collecting plastic from them and then recycle that plastic into swimsuits! Amazing! Many of them offer really sexy, beautiful swimsuits too.
Unfortunately, none of these companies offered the sort of full-cover shirt and bottoms I was looking for. (Well, one offered one that I thought was ugly and difficult to match for $80 and they were sold out of my size anyway.) I was hoping for long-sleeves, a little neck protection, full torso coverage, and matching shorts that went down to about my knees. Ideally, in a fun paisley-purple pattern!
So, after thoroughly stressing out about the issue for a day, I had a small epiphany: I can just wear my cotton sports bra and matching underwear that already look like a swimsuit. (The actual bra and panties I'm referred to are seen in my latest youtube video where I made a trench coat from upcycled jeans. It's kinda like an Easter egg in the video, although you can't miss it if you watch the whole video.) Since the cruise, I have discovered that I can wear Badger sunscreen safely (YES! YES! WOOT!), so I no longer actually have to cover up completely while swimming anyhow, and furthermore, I can throw on a linen dress when I get out of the water which will be quick-drying. So there is a whole solution where I don't have to pay $80-$90 for a swim shirt I don't really like that much and then another $50 for some swim shorts that I also don't like that much. I mean, the thing is, even though eco-polyester is better for the planet, I still hate wearing polyester at all, so I feel really relieved and happy about having come to this solution.
A big digital hug to all my friends, fans, and followers who are a "J" on the J/P axis of Myers-Brigs! (I'm an INFJ.) I already feel like I'm in last-minute pack mode even though my trip is five weeks away! (This may also sound like Enneagram type One, but I've concluded I'm actually a type Four.)
Love & blessings,
Raederle Phoenix
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