Andy Trattner

January 11, 2022

Too Much (Birthday) Chocolate

I don't celebrate or broadcast my birthday. I've participated in midnight parties, but never my own. From a solar-powered Kuti Kai cabin, dark amidst the mountaintop crickets of Vilcabamba, sleeplessly emailing this to the world is the closest I've come.

Like so many good things in life, I'm doing this accidentally. The blog has been on the back burner since going all-in on Sukkha Wasi last October. Although I've been meaning and wanting to post, it's only happening now because of some delicious Pacari theobromine preventing my brain from turning off.

That, and I can only listen to so many All-In Podcast episodes before my ears bleed.
In a good way. Bleeding ideas or something.

As I reflect on what turning 26 means, I find myself deeply grateful for the life I am currently living. I'm also keenly aware of the responsibility that I now have as a local business owner. For the first time, I have many customers and several employees counting on me, directly, every day.

I don't feel particularly different, but I recognize that I have changed a lot since I started blogging three years ago. Perhaps the most impactful change has been external; no longer am I "trapped in an isolation vortex, unanchored and uncertain". Now I'm situated within the context of a community, where my work and relationships take on profound new dimensions of significance.

Seth Godin constantly urges us to "find the others". I've never been particularly drawn to that part of his message. Yet suddenly, I understand. My professional and personal identity is taking a quantum leap forward from having found myself in the orbit of specific people.

The truth is I don't celebrate my birthday because I forgot how, after losing my home and family at age 9. It's been a wonderful and remarkable year, then, to have gained a new mom in Maya, an aunt and uncle in Cal and Siska, as well as cousins in Reiman, Carolina, and Luis.

Myriad folks are in my thoughts today, including you lovely blog subscribers and readers. Big huge thanks, sincerely, for being a part of my community as well as everything else you've done for me. But especially to Maya, for hosting (and forcing me into) a little family lunch party on the mountain.

I'm so excited to celebrate today with you all.


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