Bodhi Surf + Yoga and Katie Jones of Wander Well Podcast have teamed up to bring you some stories of transformations that take place here at Bodhi in Bahia Ballena, Osa, Costa Rica. Bodhi attracts people looking to learn how to surf and start or enhance an existing yoga practice. It also attracts people in transition, people who care about the environment, and people in need of some inspiration or transformation in their lives… whether or not they know it. Today, we are excited to share the story of two of those guests. This is the story of Stacy and Gary.
A celebration of love
Stacey and Gary first went to the Bahamas from Toronto, Canada, to celebrate their 25th anniversary together. They went with some family members and didn’t feel as though they got to properly celebrate one another and the unique qualities each of them bring to the partnership.
Stacey loves yoga and Gary loves they water. They decided to take another trip, just the two of them, and that if she would surf every day, he would do yoga every day. They chose Bodhi Surf + Yoga. She admits that they both had a lot of fun getting out of their respective comfort zones.
“Thorough and holistic approach to surfing, and respect for nature, as a yoga teacher myself, I am really aware of nature and connecting with the earth. And [Bodhi] had a way of presenting the whole philosophy of surfing, which paralleled with the philosophy of yoga.”
A joyful community
When they came in February 2015, they were the only guests, so they got an intimate experience working with the Bodhi staff. Halfway through the week another traveler joined their group. The days were spent on the yoga platform and in the surf while the nights were spent jamming together — playing instruments and singing around the dinner table. Everyone enjoyed the relaxed setting getting to know one another. Stacey said the staff “made them feel like it was a family, they made [them] feel at home.”
Stacey was pleased with how she and Gary were also able to reconnect as a couple. Gary opened up to yoga during this experience. He was beginning to see the benefits and wanted to continue when they returned to Canada. As they left Gary, told Stacey that they needed a space like Bodhi’s. A space where they could practice regularly. It was clear that he felt inspired by his experience at Bodhi Surf + Yoga.
The start of something great
The rest unfolded organically. They ended up connecting their daughter, Jazeen, to Bodhi Surf + Yoga to do some videography work. She is now working on a full length documentary called The Bodhi Wave. In January 2017 Stacey, Gary, their son, new daughter-in-law and their CrossFit coach all went down to Costa Rica to visit Jazeen. During that time they met more of the local people and noticed how warm and friendly they are.
They decided after that trip that they wanted the same warm, happy energy infused into the yoga space they would create in honor of their experiences at Bodhi. In order to capture the essence of Bodhi, they felt it was important that the people designing and building the space truly loved what they do.
In the process of planning and building, the space grew from 300 square feet to 1000 square feet. It was clear that this space was becoming something bigger than just for Stacey and Gary’s home yoga practice. They wanted it to be a space for teaching, healing, reflecting, and awakening. The spatial elements that were important to them included airflow, ceiling height, dimensions of the room, floor heating (for cold Canadian winters), light wood, and lots of natural light. They utilized sacred geometry in the architecture, the fibonacci series, and stenciled a labyrinth into the floor.
Bodhi North is born
During the building process they decided to name the space. They wanted it to carry the same energy that’s being cultivated at Bodhi Surf + Yoga so they agreed on Bodhi North. Their intention is to bring truth, love, and respect for nature through the space as well. So how did it turn out?
“So far it’s been very well received,” said Stacey during our conversation. “The people using the space have organically called it a temple.”
They intentionally kept the walls bare, open, fresh, clear. They felt this would help counteract the overstimulation and information overload that happens in our everyday lives.
Since it opened, Bodhi North studio has hosted massage therapists, reiki practitioners, yoga classes, full moon retreats, and sound therapy. In Sanskrit, Bodhi means consciousness, awareness, and awakening, and Bodhi North has effortlessly evolved into a temple-like space for like minded souls and open hearts to gather and appreciate the energy.
As it continues to grow and change, Stacey and Gary are excited to return to the birthplace of their mutual love and appreciation for yogic energy — Bodhi Surf + Yoga.
‘Twas meant to be
Stacey describes their time at Bodhi Surf and Yoga camp as “divine timing.” She says that surfing was a real challenge for her but that allowing things to unfold as they should was a transformative experience.
“Once it started it created a life of its own.”
Bodhi has had the privilege of facilitating transformational vacation experiences to countless guests. Many of those who have had life changing experiences at Bodhi come back again and again. They bring friends, family, and start to call Bodhi their second home.
Are you ready for this kind of transformational travel experience?
Written by Katie Jones