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Once again, Road Junky Retreats is heading out into the dunes for a week of storytelling, music, and meditation under the desert sky. Find your true colors and connect to a sense of inner joy as you connect to your breath in the silence of the dunes, and then dance and sing beneath the full moon at night. Every year, an eclectic mix of travelers, students, professionals, and free spirits come together for a week in the dunes to disconnect with their busy lives and just be!
The camp is in the dunes and is a basic affair but there are mattresses and blankets. You still need to bring a good sleeping bag (or two bad ones) to stay warm though. You can also just grab your mattress and go to sleep out under the stars.
The group stays the Sunday night in the village by the edge of the dunes. Then on Monday morning, the camels come to take your bags and you walk out into the dunes to the camp (about an hour and a half). Tuesday to Friday are the workshops and then on Saturday morning, pack up to return to the village and a good shower.
During the retreat, Signe will be teaching a mix of the two, first moving you through the playful flow of Vinyasa yoga where you connect your breathing with joyous movement, opening yourself to the vast space of the Sahara around you.
Each class will also have elements from Yin yoga, where long gentle stretches and relaxing restorative poses will give you a chance to gently turn more inwards to allow the body to truly relax. The classes will be aimed at everyone; both those who are trying yoga for the first time and those who have a solid personal practice.
Tom Thumb will run afternoon workshops exploring new ways to use the voice and body. What do people hear in your voice beyond the words you use? What is your body saying when you stand, walk, and run?
Drawing on elements of dance and theatre games, you will playfully explore how to express yourself in ways that might surprise you. You will encounter some of your habitual patterns of posture and movement and shake it all up a bit! Mostly, you will have fun. No experience is needed; just a sense of humor and curiosity.
After the group has eaten at night and the stars have come out, you will gather around the fire to play music, tell stories, and also from time to time, share experiences through talking circles, a Native American tradition designed to encourage an atmosphere of listening and empathy. Year after year, long-lasting friendships is seen to be formed in the retreat as each person finds their self-expression and a new capacity to relate.
Tom Thumb will also do some storytelling of modern fairy tales to let your imaginations go wandering through journeys of myth and metaphor.
The retreat will have a very relaxed vibe and there’s no obligation to take part in any of the workshops. If you just want to walk in the dunes all day and come back at mealtimes, that’s fine. The idea is for everyone to find their own rhythm according to their needs. Just please turn off your mobile phone, don’t bring alcohol or drugs and treat everyone with respect.
As Tom learned various languages, experienced varied cultures, and met a whole cast of strange and wonderful characters, he was gathering material that would infuse his books and stories with all the flavors of the road. His first few books concerned his travels, before writing Bozo and the Storyteller (a book for older children and adults) and then Somewhere Under the Rainbow (a book about rainbow gatherings - temporary autonomous communities). These days, he lives in the Czech Republic which is a great central location for making storytelling performances in the nearby capital cities.
Signe has been teaching Vinyasa and Yin yoga in Denmark and Sweden for the past four years.
The retreat takes place in the Sahara Desert located in Merzouga, Morocco. The desert is the perfect place for transformative experiences on a personal level. Just watching the moon rise at the same time as the sun sets, casting new nuances of shadow over the dunes, watching scarab beetles leave tiny tracks across the sand; it’s like being in another world.
Three meals a day will be served during the retreat. While there will be some meat served, there will always be vegetarian and vegan food so there’s no chance of going hungry. You will be eating traditional Morocco cuisine with bread, jam, olives, and tea in the morning; soup, biscuits, and dates in the afternoon; and huge plate of tajine at night and evening.
Please book your flights to arrive at one of these airports: Marrakesh Menara Airport (RAK), Fès-Saïs Airport (FEZ), Agadir-Al Massira Airport (AGA) or Casablanca's Mohammed V International Airport (CMN). From there, you catch a bus all the way to Merzouga (11 hours) where Road Junky Retreats team will pick you up on Sunday evening.
From Fes, you could even catch a night bus on the Saturday to Rissani and from there, take a taxi to Hassalbied to meet the group before walking out to the dunes. If you miss the bus, you could even make catch the night bus on Sunday and catch the group on Monday morning before they load up the camels to go.