Our Llama Training DVDs

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Click on the image above to find out more about Llama Training with Bobra Goldsmith, or on the one below to find out about Training Llamas to Drive.

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Llama T-Shirts

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Clicking on the image above takes you to our t-shirts, sweatshirts, mugs, tote bags, notebooks, calendars, and more with this design.... Clicking on the image below takes you to all our llama designs on various items.

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Beyond these simple things, the surprising connections that were happening more and more in our lives often left me in awe.

One July morning, only one person came on the brunch hike, as some other hikers cancelled. So Kathryn and I talked more personally than we might have otherwise. Within a few minutes, we realized that we had been in a workshop together four years before, “Creative Visualization” with Shakti Gawain.

Not only that, but we had been partners in an exercise of visualizing our lives twenty-five years in the future. We wondered if we would run into each other in another twenty years? It was particularly timely that we met then, as I was finishing the first edition of this book, and she was a book publicist, able to give me some excellent advice.

Even without such a tie, conversations often became very personal and spiritual. I was deeply moved by a man who spoke of how his faith was helping him to get over cancer. Another day, two delightful and thoughtful couples who ran an Evangelical bookstore blew away some stereotypes I had about that branch of Christianity.

So our llama hikes turned out to be a great pleasure. Kelly and I both enjoyed the hikes, we met wonderful people, and we loved connecting people and llamas. We continued them for two more summers, each year with more people finding us through word of mouth. A mention in Sunset helped a lot too. I was surprised at how many repeat visitors we had.

But finally we had to admit that the hikes were not our greatest business venture. There was a lot of work involved, and I wasn’t sure that we were making minimum wage. I could have figured it out but I didn’t really want to know.

Many other things were calling to us: books to write, videotapes to create, llamas to breed and train. We couldn’t do everything. We gave a lot of thought to hiring someone else to lead the hikes, but it still seemed rather marginal. Insurance rates were skyrocketing too.

So at the end of three seasons, we stopped doing the commercial hikes.

It seemed to me that hiking with llamas was the most fully shared experience that we had with the animals. We were doing the same things: walking along, observing our environment. Our desires and emotions were very similar: we wanted to have fun, not to work too hard, to have something good to eat. The sense of equality was very natural. “Why do the llamas do this?” a hiker once asked me. “They do it partly because we ask it of them, but mainly they do it because it interests them,” I replied.

After walking with the llamas and relaxing with the picnics, many of our guests commented that they felt very peaceful and yet energized as well. “I’ve recharged my batteries,” one hiker summed it up.

The gentle, intelligent llamas opened people’s hearts, and the magnificent views of Mount Shasta and other mountains opened them up to a larger sense of the world. With that often came a larger view of themselves. It was a privilege to witness this process and to take part in it ourselves.

There was a Tibetan Buddhist monastery in the valley below us, with a lama, or spiritual teacher, sometimes in residence. We were grateful that we had our lamas in residence too.

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