Aspen, Blog

Ski Lifts + Sunshine in the Rockies!

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The road to Aspen (beautiful Evergreens all around me)
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On top of Aspen Ski Mountain – using Depth Effect on iPhone 7 Plus

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I did a trip to Colorado recently – I hung out a bit in Aspen (if you’re interested in Colorado at all, check out these posts I did when I went in the Fall: Psychics and Silver in Colorado, Mussels in the mountains, Charcuterie and Artisan Cheeseboard, Spring Water at 8,000ft, Fall Colors of Colorado, Steampunk bar in Aspen). The thrill for me is really in getting there – I had a stunning road trip through the rockies. The Evergreens were as gorgeous as ever – my quest was to showcase this breathtaking place to my brother who was visiting from South Africa. For the Skybok video you’re about to see (it’s only 1 minute), I used my iPhone 7 Plus on a DJI – Osmo Mobile Gimbal Stabilizer, which you can get at Best Buy! I HIGHLY recommend it!! On the website, search  “DJI – Osmo Mobile Gimbal Stabilizer”. They also have awesome drones which I was tempted to get for this because I was in the ski lift at one point with gorgeous views of the town 😉

Best Buy Co, Inc.

Best Buy Co, Inc.

A cheaper alternative to the Osmo Stabilizer:

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Hotel Jerome in Aspen was rated by Conde Nast as one of the Gold List “Favorite Hotels of the World”
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The bar area inside the hotel
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Opposite view
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Room in Hotel Jerome
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Hotel Jerome was ranked in the Reader’s Choice Awards as one of the Top 10 Hotels on the American West
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Bathroom, double vanity
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Luxury Suite
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Luxury Suite
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View from the window in the Fall
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Fall in Colorado
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Prospect Bar + Restaurant in Hotel Jerome
Scene on a street corner in Aspen
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Ski Lift in Aspen
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Entrance to the Ski Lift – ticket prices, visit
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On the streets
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Osmo Stabilizer on the right
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The iconic “Independence Pass” sign as you travel through the Continental Divide
Pan seared Tuna salad at “J Bar” (Hotel Jerome)
Going up the Aspen Mountain Ski Lift (not for the faint hearted!)
Saw this sign – we don’t have bears in South Africa
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Interior scene of “J-Bar” – this is part of the Hotel Jerome: a very old, historic hotel
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Entrance to “Justice Snow’s” – a very iconic bar attached to the Wheeler Opera House
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Walking down an Aspen street in early morning
❤ My Work, Blog, Skybok

Skybok New Videos

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Here is a new trailer re-edited for my production company Skybok, which specializes in producing video profiles showcasing the world around us.

Also posted, another re-edit, of a previous outreach video. “Mandela Day” at the Provincial Hospital in Port Elizabeth South Africa.

Please share, embed and tell your friends about my channel🙂

Other recent one:

I’m on Instagram + Facebook

Blog, Leadville

Mining For Silver in Leadville, Colorado

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National Mining Hall of Fame + Museum
A replica of an underground cave at the National Mining Hall of Fame + Museum

I spent some time in Leadville, Colorado, famous for its mining history. (Did you know there are 260 miles of underground caves there?) It’s also famous for its iconic couple from the town’s silver mining boom, Horace + Baby Doe Tabor. I visited a few iconic spots, including the “Silver Dollar Saloon” – America’s Oldest Wild West Saloon – and the National Mining Hall of Fame + Museum.

Twenty years after the Gold Rush, the Colorado Silver Boom occurred in 1879 causing hordes of silver seekers to rush the Rockies. Horace Tabor, known as “The Bonanza King of Leadville,” joined the crowds and landed in the Centennial state becoming one of the richest silver barons in history.

Leadville, Colorado
Leadville, Colorado, is the highest city in the U.S
The entrance to the National Mining Hall of Fame
The entrance to the National Mining Hall of Fame
18K Gold Howard Hunting Watch
Gold treasures on display at the National Mining Hall of Fame + Museum
A display of minerals
A Display of Minerals at The National Mining Hall of Fame + Museum
Giant Amethyst
Minerals on Display
Glow in the Dark Minerals at The National Mining Hall of Fame + Museum
National Museum of Mining
Life-size replicas of miners
Hard Rock Mine Photos of the West
Many themed rooms exist in the museum, including the hard rock mine, gold rush room + others
Mine replica
Mine Replicas made of wood
Silver Dollar Saloon
Silver Dollar Saloon
Silver Dollar Saloon
Interior of Silver Dollar Saloon
Leadville, Colorado
A view of the snow-capped Rocky Mountains on a street corner


❤ My Work, Blog, Skybok

Skybok Editing

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Tamika Scripps Skybok

What am I up to this week? Mostly editing, producing new content for Skybok…. check out its YouTube channel. I am using a Canon Xa10, Canon 5D MK2, Canon Rebel T5….. Editing in Adobe Premier CC. If you like travel, tourism, history – you might like it!

Here are some of my favorite videos….mostly 1-2 minute profiles….more on Skybok’s blog here. If you like video production, digital media, audio-visual creation tips, entrepreneurship, behind-the-scenes stuff you might like it!

I’m also on Instagram. 

I’m using a new website I found called CANVA for thumbnail images, like this one of Charleston’s Skybok profile. Canva is fantastic for any design projects you have! *Tip: Check out DeathToTheStock for brilliant stock images.

Blog, Charleston, Daily, USA

The Magic of Charleston

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Charleston South Carolina Video
Touring one of Charleston’s iconic homes

I spent a weekend in Charleston, South Carolina, during which time I went on a history tour with Charleston Old Walled City Tours, ate the region’s famous shrimp & grits, learnt about their haunted graveyards, enjoyed their world-famous architecture + overlooked their stunning ocean. Here’s a 1-minute video Skybok produced on this gorgeous town!

Share some love on Facebook🙂


Blog, Charleston, USA

A Dollar For Your Thoughts At The Griffon Pub

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Pic taken at The Griffon Pub in Charleston, South Carolina! Voted by Southern Living Magazine as one of the “Best Bars of the South”, The Griffon Pub has collected over 20 years of dollar bills with scribbled handwritten messages from sentimental travelers on its walls + ceiling. This is my first post on Charleston – more pictures + exclusive video from this fascinating town coming this month.

Quick recap:

+ Did a walking tour with this tour company

+ Stayed at this hotel 

+ Had my favorite meal at this restaurant 

+ Discovered bone marrow at this bar 

+ Recommend you visit this venue if you go!

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Blog, Port Elizabeth

A South African Ethnobotanist Breathes Life Into Plant Medicine

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Jean-Francois Sobiecki

phytoalchemy-logo-s-300pixelAn Intro

Jean-Francois Sobiecki is a qualified South African ethnobotanist (medicinal plant researcher), herbalist, intuitive healer + nutritionist.

His life has been an initiation into:

+ Traditional Medicine

+ Healing

+ Personal Growth

+ Transformation


A Gift From Mom

Early in his journey, Jean discovered he had healers in his family from his mother’s side. This made him realize his attraction to healing plants was a gift from his family to help others later in his life.  Growing up, Jean went through the typical wounded healer’s crisis: he felt overwhelmed by being sensitive to energy + feeling, which later he developed as a means to heal others.

Jean has a practice called “Phyto (pronounced-Fyto) Alchemy”.Being a Phytoalchemist refers to Jeans path of using plant medicines
to help heal and transform his and others lives. He learnt from a young age about medicinal plants from encyclopaedias + his garden. His knowledge was intensified at a later age by a masterful South African traditional healer. At the same time, he was initiated with powerful plant medicines such as “ayahuasca”, “san pedro” + “ubulawu”.

Psychoactive cleansing plant; Silene Species

Learning With Jean

Jean uses all the techniques + processes he learnt on his path to guide his patients today in his practice.

+ Re-awakening the visualization world he learnt through western magician archetype mentors

+ Inner child work

+ Self-esteem counselling

+ South African traditional medicine initiation

Despite all the knowledge I gained from books + personal experience, I would not have made most of my growth without the help and teaching from my mentors


Traders + Healers in Johannesburg’s “Muti” Market


Diviners + Herbalists

Jean did anthropological fieldwork in the late 90’s to investigate the role of medicinal plants in the practice of South African traditional healers: the Izangoma (diviners) + the Izinyanga (herbalists). It was during this era that Jean met his most significant mentor, Mrs Letty Mamonyai Maponya.

Letty would become a close friend + teacher over the next 14 years, with whom he would learn about the world of African Traditional Medicine, healing + psychoactive (nervous system healing) plants.

Traditional Healing is really holistic healing combined with medicine. The Traditional Healer uses talk therapy (counselling), bone throwing (a divination similar to tarot cards), lifestyle guidance, as well as providing medicinal plants. This is all with the aim to help his or her patient to be well

Steaming Medicines

Medicinal plants are used in very practical ways in South African Traditional Medicine (SATM). The use of steaming medicines, for example, is very healing + relaxing:

+ Powdered-ground down tree barks are placed in a plastic washbasin

+ Boiling water is placed on them

+ They produce a steam

This steaming helps detox the skin as well as the mind from impurities. Westerns could benefit enormously from utilizing this simple yet effective treatment method, which we have mostly forgotten in modern day society!


Plants That Heal

Southern Africa is not only the cradle of humankind but also of medicinal + psychoactive plants. There are literally hundreds of plants that are used to heal nervous system conditions which require further investigation.

Jean has discovered through his research that both South American + South African healers use medicinal plants in the same initiation sequence in order to heal psychological illness. This could indicate a cross cultural technology of holistic medicine therapy-that most are not aware of.

This is a picture of “bozizo”


A powerful category of body cleansing + mind healing plant medicines
is “ubulawu”. It is used to cleanse the body of phlegm in order to open the mind. It leads to enhanced intuition + sensitivity. Jean warns that these particular ubulawu medicines should not be experimented with through online purchasing + without a traditional healer’s guidance. They can cause psychological confusion + harm when the wrong species are provided (species which Jean is finding from many ethnobotanical suppliers) or used incorrectly in the non-traditional methods.

Western experimenters are using powdered capsules. But traditionally they are used in small amounts with large amounts of water – 5 litres of water – to vomit + cleanse the stomach + chest with! This is a very old, trusted practice in many countries. South America, India, ancient Greece + Africa are all examples of where such practices have anciently been used. It’s alarming we have lost connection with it to such an large extent as modern people!

Preparing “Ubulawu” correctly

Plant Baths

Plant baths are also a very effective means to heal, that many westerners are not familiar with.

Jean’s passion is to teach people how to use plants in these ways:

+ To cleanse

+ To open

+ To strengthen a person

Khanyisa Healing Garden

Jean is currently in the process of creating a network of healing + research gardens (the Khanyisa Healing Garden Project) where this knowledge can be documented, preserved, studied + utilised for future generations for healing + community building.

While this project is being established, Jean is offering medicinal plant tours + private training for people who want to learn about these plants + traditional holistic healing as well as facilitating the ubulawu process of healing.    

While traditional medicine has much magical thinking that is over-sensationalized, there are many ways to use the traditional plant medicines: for healing physical illness, as tools for self enquiry, as a means of growth + self mastery. These ways are waiting to be taught to the western world!

Jean-Francois Sobiecki, one of South Africa’s leading specialist ethnobotanists (medicinal plant researchers) + a traditionally trained herbalist healer (Inyanga) offers:

+ Full or half day guided traditional medicine tours of the Johannesburg Muti (medicinal plant market) as well as the beautiful Klipriviersberg Nature Reserve in the South of Johannesburg

The aim is to explore + learn about African Traditional Healing + Medicine Practices

“Ubulawu” Medicine. It opens the mind to dreaming + intuition


+ Private half or full day tours with Jean = R2700.00 ($200) per person.
+ Group full day tour = R1800.00 ($135) per person on group tours (2 or more people).


To contact Jean:, +27 76 163 0504. Practice:

Research sites: and