Oak Communications
July 2013
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I stepped off the plane in Denpasar, Bali and immediately out of my comfort zone. Which way do we go? Should we exchange money here or wait until we get into town? Someone is supposed to meet us here from the institute where we will be studying Balinese dance and music, but I don't see him amongst all of the men holding up signs.

Then Danu appeared and ushered us to his van for the hour-long drive through the heavy traffic of cars and motorbikes, which did not observe the lane lines.

When we arrived in Ubud, he  invited us to his home for fresh green coconut juice. We had to decide whether to accept his offer, which we did, and his wife cut down a fresh coconut that promised to keep us from getting Bali belly, which it did for our first week anyway.

Click here  to continue reading about my recent adventures on the island of Bali, Indonesia where I studied Balinese music and dance and learned, once again, the value of stepping out of my comfort zone.

 Performing male dance Learning gamelan on the jegogan


Be well,

Sue Schleifer

(To see more photos, please go to my Bali photo album on Facebook.)


The Key to the Castle Book  News
Key to the Castle: Zen and Travel Stories of Trust

I will be interviewed by Cheryl Castille on "The Exchange," on KRVS on Tuesday, July 30th at 1 pm CST. Listen live or on the internet.


"The Key to the Castle: Zen and Travel Stories of Trust" is available for digital download for FREE until August 1, 2013. Go to Smashwords and enter the coupon code SL25X.



Breaux Bridge, LA - Book Reading and Signing
Thursday, August 1, 6:30 - 8:00pm
107 N. Main Street

Joint book reading and signing with my husband, Mark DeWitt

Santa Barbara, CA - Book Reading and Signing
Saturday, August 24, 2 - 3:30pm
15 E. Anapamu St

Ojai, CA - Book Reading and Signing
Date and Time TBA
214 W Ojai Ave

Gambier, OH - Book Reading and Signing
September 29 or 30, tba
Kenyon College Bookstore

Columbus, OH - Book Reading and Signing
Tuesday, October 1, 6 - 8pm
19 Gay Street

Please "Like" The Key to the Castle Facebook page to learn about future events.

Have you read the book? If so, please consider writing a review on Amazon or Smashwords.
Thank you!


Buzz on the Book 

"I just finished reading your terrific book. I bought it a few weeks ago and just knew it would be a great reflective read for my family trip to Spain. The way you have shared and blended both internal and external travels and your personal growth in your life was very moving. The crazy thing for me to understand is how well you listened in our coaching sessions when you have so much to share. Thanks for helping me with my own internal travels and growth."

Lee Smith

"The Key to the Castle: Zen and Travel Stories of Trustis not a book about miracles, or about the cathartic purgings that come with tragic engagement; not about hopeless romance or romance finally found. But it is a book about the quiet miraculous found in paying attention to our lives, about what travel does to the nerve endings. This book brings us to the vast landscape of the journey and how the well-traveled soul is the soul that trusts the intelligence of spirit, or psyche, or mind, or heart---whatever you choose as the dominant guide in your own life."  

Darrell Bourque, author of Megan's Guitar and Other Poems from Acadie, and other books, Louisiana Poet Laureate, 2007-09 and 2009-11 



"Zen at its essence is about finding freedom and spontaneity in our lives. Travel is one way many of us get a taste of this experience. In her new book, Sue Schleifer brings together her experiences of Zen and travel to reveal the wonders of a life lived freshly in the moment."  

Zen Master Bon Soeng, Empty Gate Zen Center



"With some trepidation, I read Sue's chapters that describe the early days of Backroads and was immediately transported back in time by her thoughtful prose. It also gave me a chance to reflect on how much Backroads has changed, for the better. Her insider's look at active travel will give both armchair travelers and adventure seekers an appreciation for how experiencing new places encourages us to ask life's big questions."  

Tom Hale, Founder and President, Backroads, the active travel company


Coaching Services  

Photo of Sue Schleifer
Photo by Robin May


Have you been thinking about working with a life/career coach? Want to connect? 


Give me a call to schedule a complimentary coaching consultation.   


Check out what a few of my clients have said about the coaching experience. 


"Sue truly cares about her clients' goals and brings that passion to her work as a life coach. With her fresh perspective and eye for possibility, she helps me find creative solutions to seemingly intractable problems.
Plenty of professional and creative people would benefit from working with Sue, and I particularly recommend her to anyone who needs to get 'unstuck'."
Medical Editor and Fabric Artist


"A year ago I met Sue for our first session. Through her probing and listening we pinpointed areas that, with specific attention to my thinking and choices, help me:


  • be personally more effective
  • move towards a more balanced life

My spouse and employees have noticed a positive change, as have I."

Sales Manager-Fortune 500 Company


"Since I first hired a coach I have been a happier person and a more successful businessman. My company has become much more successful, our employees have had the opportunity to grow to the fullest of their capabilities and everyone seems to enjoy each day of life much more than in the past."



"Doesn't everyone need a coach? From working with Sue, I'm convinced of it. I am spending more time on the activities that are most important to me and have set aside some old patterns (like worrying too much!) that got in my way. Sue is helping me achieve my interpersonal as well as career goals."
President, High Tech Management Consulting Firm

I would love to be a resource for you too!

Let's talk. 


Sue Schleifer, M.A.


510.316.3319 - cell
Oak Communications

Lafayette, LA and throughout the country

510.316.3319 - cell

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