How zucchini noodles got me back into the USA.
…zucchini noodles and pink Himalayan sea salt to be exact.
On Labor Day of 2015 I was detained by Border Patrol at Chicago’s O’hare Airport on the grand suspicion of…traveling too much, LOL. Although running a virtual business is becoming more commonplace, the silver haired border agent who stopped me was skeptical of my superfoodie lifestyle.
“No sir, that’s cacao, not co—,” I mumbled when he pushed the 5 kilo bag through x-ray, but as the questions kept coming (and my ride patiently circled the airport terminal) things got tense.
Who was I supposed to be anyway, roaming around the world with a suitcase of Slovenian truffle oil, Mexican chocolate, Croatian lavender, plus more Japanese kitchen gadgets this side of your local dollar store. With no end in sight, the agent continues to go through my traveling pantry. Leaning against the metal rail I’m jetlagged, HANGRY and start to nod off. Eventually he pulls my neon green veggie spiralizer out of the (now) messy bag. I look up…
“It actually makes the BEST low-carb zucchini noodles,” I blurted out, surprising myself.
Something about the genuine look of confusion on his face threw me into teacher mode and I started to explain the process, pointing to the bag of pink Himalayan sea salt.
“Pink Himalayan sea salt?!” he shouted, “Wow, my doctor wants me to use that…so you say it’s good stuff, eh?” He then proceeded to pack my bag, apologize for the delay and warmly welcome me back to the USA….
…Fast forward to Halloween 2016. I found myself again in Chicago’s airport, this time for a Global Entry travel card interview that’s usually almost impossible to schedule. In what has to be the one of the most coincidental moments of my life, the EXACT agent who’d stopped me the year before was now the one to interview me!
(It’s usually hard for me to remember people I’ve only met once but I was 100% sure that this was the same guy.) Although his silver hair struck me at first, I quickly noticed that he had lost weight in those 14 months.
“You use pink Himalayan sea salt don’t you?” I smiled as we walked down the hall.
“I do, wait, how did you know that?” he paused before we entered the office, “You need to tell me whats going on right now, why would you say that, how do you know that?”
I reminded him that a year before he’d stopped me at the border and that we’d spoken about how he was starting to use the salt. He recalled that encounter and was shocked at the coincidence. He went on to tell me he’d lost 150lbs after cutting processed foods and getting the fresh fruits and veggies into his daily meals and that yes he was using the sea salt and low-carb noodles.
I was impressed. That was great news.
Now of course my impromptu sea salt and spiralizer lesson didn’t single handedly save him but was instead just one of the many AH-HA moments needed to help him in his transformation.
We all need these coincidental moments. Connecting the dots pushes us to the next stage and lets us know we are going in the right direction.
And of course this moment helped me too.
I was able to reach a new, deeper level in my practice that day when I put my frustrations and ego aside and decided to teach someone…who was basically trying to put me in jail.
I hit him with some namaste LOL so needless to say the interview was a success!
so, this will make traveling much much easier – which means I’ll be doing more supperclubs, workshops and retreats.
If you’d like to work with me, drop a line…have food, will travel 😉
here’s my favorite zucchini noodle recipe right now: sesame salad