Totally Lashed Up

As is always the way, you meet the most interesting people just as you’re about to leave a place! 🙁

Yesterday we met Jess & Stuart, a lovely couple from Wales in the UK.

Other than having the most beautiful sing songy Welsh accent they were a bundle of fun.

Stuart is a wedding singer! Never met one of those before and Jess is a make up artist and has recently started her own ecommerce business selling eyelashes!

Her brand name – ‘Totally Lashed Up’!

You can imagine her surprise & excitement when I explained what I did! 😁

So naturally we spent a long time discussing her business, what she was doing now, where she wanted to take it etc.

Clearly a talented and committed young woman her tech confusion, fears of marketing, lack of understanding of sales funnels, email marketing etc are the same concerns and fears so many of my community have had over the years.

The same concerns & fears I had when I started out in 2010.

So we set about taking some immediate action.

She said she had wanted to make a video of her new soon to be launched eyelash product while in the Maldives, but fear of looking crap in front of the camera has held her back.

Within an hour I’d sent her marching back to her room to get her products and we were sat on a beautiful beach sofa videoing her demonstrating her new product with a backdrop of a white sandy beach & crystal clear waters.

Is it the best video in the world? No.

Is it good enough to start getting her message out? Yes.

Will people love her slight shyness! Yes.

Did we get it done? Hell Yes! 😁

Here’s a clip.

So impressed was I with her attitude & enthusiasm and after meeting Geetika in Jaipur who wanted to take her husbands cooking business online I found myself with no other choice.

I am going to launch a new, updated & comprehensive training course on how to build a lifestyle business.

It will be a nuts & bolts course including selling digital products, services & physical products.

Best news? It’s going to be FREE! 😁

Watch this space!

In the meantime head over to Instagram & check out what Jess is doing in her business. It’s fab! https://www.instagram.com/totally.lashed.up/

Manta Rays & Venomous Lion Fish!

I talked on Wednesday about the ‘inevitable scuba dive I would do’ and sure enough yesterday was the day!

At 11am I headed down to the jetty to meet ‘D’ my Japanese dive instructor.

Within an hour we were exploring the reef which was teeming with life! 🐠🐟🐡🦈🐢

I felt like I was in a live version of ‘Shark Tale’!

I swam alongside sharks, a huge turtle, my favourite Bat Fish & a multitude of marine life. It was fabulous. 😁

Later that day after the sun had set over the pristine horizon, I once again ventured down the jetty to meet D.

This time I was a little apprehensive as we were off to explore a dark reef and see if we could spot Manta Rays.

The only downside? At nighttime the reef is full of dangerous fish! 😳

Lion fish, stone fish, trigger fish.

D informed me that if I did not keep perfect buoyancy and happened to make contact with one of these venomous animals, ‘make big problem’ he said.

‘Hospital in Sri Lanka’ he said with a huge smile on his face which did nothing to calm my churning tummy! 🥴

I remembered a conversation I’d had with my extreme sporting friend, 8 years my senior, Nikki when we were skiing.

‘You don’t get old & stop doing these things Jo’ she said. ‘You stop doing them & so get old.’

Not wanting to age prematurely I heeded Nikki’s words & ventures into the dark waters knowing somewhere down there unaffected by venomous fish were also sharks. 🦈

Good god what was I doing! 😯

As it turned out I kept perfect buoyancy, even as the Mantas swooped and played through our torch lights.

We saw a beautiful turtle swim above us, all sorts of brightly coloured fish including the beautiful but dangerous Lion fish.

Then we turned off our torches to watch the neon plankton dance through the water. It was magical!

I’ve had a few magical moments on this trip & I do feel truly blessed (and also very brave!) 😂😂😂

Altogether Too Beautiful!

Well what can I say about the Maldives!?

It’s truly everything you think it’s going to be and more!

White sandy beaches, crystal clear turquoise waters, blue skies, palm trees, sharks, turtles, Manta rays, fish of all descriptions.

Quite simply paradise.

We’re staying at a place called Olhuveli Resort & Spa and 3 nights in a Jacuzzi Water Villa cost us £555 (approx $720).

Bearing in mind we just travelled across India for 12 nights for no more than £1000 ($1300) accommodation cost, this place is a little on the high end!

Add in the 45min boat transfer from & to the airport, food, drinks, snorkelling gear, the scuba dive I will inevitably do & you find yourself a pretty penny or two out of pocket!

But this is why Rhett & I work so hard. This is our ‘Why’.

So we have the freedom & the resources to explore the world, sometimes on a budget & sometimes on the luxury end.

For some it’s houses, cars, clothes, shoes etc. For us, it’s travel. ✈️🗺

So here we are, my Sister & I, at the final destination of our ‘Sisters on Tour – No 4’ annual trip & we are finishing off in style.

Enough talk, here’s some pics! 😁

Madurai to Kochi

So we’re supposed to be in Sri Lanka right now but unfortunately after the recent horrific events we felt it best to change our travel plans and extend our stay in India for a couple of days.

So we added a day in Madurai and a day and a half in Kochi.

However, I have to be honest we’re not getting any younger (my sister is 8 years older than me), and our trip to date has been full on, and so after a hot morning visiting various temples in Madurai, we spent the rest of our time there chilling by the pool!

(It had to be done).

But the Meenakshi Temple was well worth the visit as was the Gandhi Museum outlining the history of Indian Independence.

Gosh us Brits have got a lot to answer for in this world. 😞

While chillaxing at the hotel though we were not alone & were privy to some wonderful dance displays from our beautiful friends.

What a great way to relax and let the day go by! 😁

Namaste 🙏

I’m not going to lie, I had a very distinct preconceived idea of what India was going to be like.

Many of my friends & colleagues have travelled through India and almost all gave the impression of a chaotic, dirty, stomach bug inducing place, that you either loved or hated.

The bit they missed out is that it’s an absolutely huge country with very different cities and places throughout.

New Delhi is big, spacious & very British.

Old Delhi is busy, bustling & full of life

Jaipur was beautiful once but us in desperate need of investment

Varanasi is spiritual, magical & chaotic all at the same time

Madurai is rural, far less touristy with the most beautiful temples

And they’re are only the places we have seen. There are many more towns and cities that will have their own vibe.

However it’s no dirtier or more chaotic than Bangkok in Thailand, parts of Vietnam, Myanmar, Borneo or even some parts of London!

In fact for the most part it’s pretty modern & a lot more Western than I expected.

You can’t love or hate it as a whole because there are so many differences across the country,

I wouldn’t go back to Jaipur, nor Madurai, but Delhi & Varanasi are definitely on my return list.

The most important thing though is now when I’m taking to someone from India, whether they be Hindu, Sikh, Buddhist or Muslim, I have a greater understanding for who they are, what the history of their country is, where they live, how they might have grown up etc.

Any fear I may have had of the cultural differences between us is eradicated through travelling here and seeing it for myself.

The only way to get rid of fear, intolerance & hatred is for people to come face to face with those they do not understand and realise we are all the same.

Different backgrounds, upbringings & beliefs, but essentially all the same.

To travel is to increase understanding, tolerance & love.

Namaste 🙏 ❤️