Back in 2004, when I still worked as a civil servant, I saw an advert for a fundraising charity trek to Peru for breast cancer. The thought of trekking Machu Picchu filled me with dread to be honest as the physical conditions can be harsh with the low oxygen levels because of the altitude, the cold nights and the extreme weather during the day.
Yet, it was a trip that was going to change my life. Seeing how people in Peru respected traditions from centuries before, they worshipped nature just like they would love and respect a member of their own family, but more specifically seeing how they relied on what we call “alternative medicine” (ie not Western medicine or allopathic medicine) opened my eyes to a different way of living.
Noticing how Peruvians didn’t wear a watch and learning how ancient Incas (who, I learned, were the kings in pre-Colombian Peru and therefore are not to be confused with the whole population) planned their activities on the basis of the position of the sun and stars in the sky, I decided to stop wearing a watch. Nine years later, I still don’t wear a watch. Now it is quite commonplace as we look at our mobiles to find out what time it is, but back in 2004 it was a bit of a novelty not to wear a watch.
Probably the best memory of that life-changing trip to Peru was looking at the Milky Way for the first time and it looked like a lit-up Christmas tree; and a Quechua sun salutation ceremony from one of our trek guides in which he thanked the sun and the elements asking for a safe journey for the whole trekking group. It was emotional and gave us all goose-bumps.
Then again, as much as Peru was awe-inspiring and life-changing, it was another fundraising trip, this time around to Brazil, which made me come up with the concept for Energya. People in Brazil mention the word “energy” or “energia” – here’s how it sounds when a Brazilian person says it:
Energy… energy… people in Rio de Janeiro used that word regularly in conversation. And it had a nice ring to it, so it make the English word “energy” more exotic, I thought of adding an “a” to it and make it into “Energya®” (and I registered the trademark to be on the safe side).
What about the fundraising trip in Rio de Janeiro? Well, that’s another story for another blog… Read the story of the Rio trip that inspired the creation of Energya®.