New and NotableSeptember 1, 2009 By: Marianne Dougherty, Lotus Abrams American Salon
Salon owner Marie Ferro joined life coach Martha Beck at a self-transformation adventure retreat in Africa.
Martha Beck is a best-selling author, life coach and a regular contributor to O, The Oprah Magazine. Three or four times a year she also hosts a Self Transformation Adventure Retreat (STAR) at the Londolozi Game Reserve in South Africa. Londolozi—the word means "protector of all living things" in Zulu—was once a farmed-out piece of land that John, Dave and Shan Varty inherited in the 1970s and restored so that today it is the blueprint for modern day conservation in South Africa. Beck finds that the African wilderness offers a way of peeling back layers of social conditioning to heal your essential self, and she and four other life coaches work with no more than 12 spiritual seekers, helping them develop a clear sense of their individual purpose and a strong confidence that they're achieving it by the time they leave. "Being away from everything that was familiar to me, I was able to view myself apart from the life I had created," says Ferro, who found that doing deep-processing work with Beck while being immersed in the natural rhythm and beauty of Africa helped her reach deeper into her soul than she thought possible. Visit marthabeck.com for information on upcoming tours. —MARIANNE DOUGHERTY
Martha Beck and Marie Ferro bond at Londolozi.
On safari in a Land Rover with a guide who was an excellent tracker.
The group encountered this African child at the Londolozi village.
While on an evening safari, Ferro snapped this photo.
Londolozi is said to have the best leopard viewing in Africa.
Zebras graze on the game preserve, which the Varty brothers inherited in the 1970s.
Londolozi's four newly refurbished camps are nestled along the Sand River.
Ferro in rain gear on a tracking expedition