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Atacama. Atacama. Atacama. I wrote, spoke and whispered intentions of the desert city in Chile at a different campground each morning as I made my way through southern Utah in August of 2019. Intentions are powerful. By November I was in

Calama, bound for none other than Atacama. Sarah McDaniel (co-creator) and I spent a month exploring the many regions of Chile, diving deep into tribal and magical history and sourcing inspiration. Chile is a country where the heart beats in accordance with the spirits, sorcerers influence outcomes, folklore is fact, and female shaman heal through dream medicine. The trip sparked a screenplay called Siku, an unknowing abductee who regains her identity in a different dimension. 



I met an expedition guide at the end of the world in Patagonia. I knew him for less than 48 hours. I asked him to spend the summer in a van with me, criss-crossing America. I yearned to level up, to summit peaks and backpack through more national parks. “It’ll make for a great story,” I told myself. This was my worst idea yet. Our shared memories are scenes of vivid, hellish fury set against immense, majestic backdrops. The trip ended early in a collision between the van and a yellow concrete barrier at the gas pump. I walked away with jagged fragments of glory: I summited several 14ers, backpacked part of the snow-covered Teton Crest Trail, slept on tundra, evaded a grizzly bear, and found my way back to the van in 10+ miles of wilderness solo without a map or service. The trip taught me to observe my fantasies instead of acting upon them.  

Psychic Ranch


Bill, an 80-year-old artist, introduced me to Psychic Ranch. He spent one summer on a scaffold in the sweltering heat of the desert, outfitting a tower with intentional designs for each cardinal direction. The property belonged to Pop Life Universe,

an organization dedicated to co-creating a new world of community, creativity, and wellness. Psychic Ranch was a safe haven. The three-free standing, colorful structures and courtyard design went on to host a series of artistic gatherings. Creators connected with each other and left inspired. Our final hurrah culminated in an unparalleled Halloween event—each person, in costume, contributed their own unique art form— there was a crystal bowl sound bath, live painting, collaborative drawing, interactive installations, singing, bonfire bonding and a lot of laughter. Psychic Ranch was sold at the end of 2019. In 2020, the new owners painted everything white in an attempt to blot out history. Memories can’t be erased. I witnessed firsthand the demand for a dynamic, communal setting and how, when united, creatives can flourish. I intend to find the next Psychic Ranch.