Cosmic Cow Pie: Connecting the Dots


Glocal #4 The 18 Mile Rule™

Glocal #4 "The 18 Mile Rule™"

One of the great mysteries of the rain forest resides six miles east of Manaus, Brazil on the Amazon River.   This phenomenon of physics brings a global lesson to possibly every local organization, group and individual who look at it and think about the higher meaning of this transformational occurrence. “The 18 Mile Rule™” at the mixing of the waters represents  a message to help any community or individual looking to combine ideas and resources.

Eighteen miles along the Amazon River the dark waters of the Rio Negro tumbling from Colombia lay side by side with the latte colored water of the Solimoes River stemming from Peru before they mix into one turbulent entity flowing to the Atlantic.

The Amazon River has recently been deemed the longest and widest river in the world, ousting the Nile by a mere 150 meters according to our jungle guide. The Amazon has one of the largest drain basins in the world with over 7,000,000 square kilometers and accounts for 1/5 of the world’s total river flow.

Extreme Science published an article giving interesting statistics and showing some of the huge creatures that live below the surface of the Amazon giving it even more intrigue.   Smells, sounds and  visual stimulation come alive along the amazing Amazon.

As my husband and I travel the world “Connecting Dots” we are taking the global lessons and applying them to local situations as identified in the theme of the Spring 2011 Semester At Sea voyage.

The graphic illustration of the two entities of water created the perfect metaphor representing the three variables which are part of the physical equation to sustain this phenomenon

  1. Temperature
  2. Velocity
  3. Density

The Solimoes River travels at 6 km per hour with a temperature of 18 C and a high density.

The Rio Negro is traveling at 1 km per hour with a temperature of 23 C and a low density rich with natural acids and chemicals from the jungle. The acidic content of the water actually kills the mosquito larva coming in from the hibiscus leaves so there are very few mosquitoes on the Rio Negro. There are some unique physics involved in the mixing of the waters with the three important physical variable factors existing between the two bodies of water. The significant force which is created by both rivers takes 18 miles of traveling together before they actually combine as one.

The picture of this phenomenon stimulated thoughts about how this compared to people and organizations. Two different organizations might be moving at different speeds, some are warmer in the way they present their services and they might be rich with content. The other group might be slower and cooler with what they are providing and not so dense with additives. The two groups must travel the 18 miles together twisting and turning before they can blend and become one. Many times the people running the groups might not have the patience to go the 18 miles for success to become one entity and the blending never takes place which could be a severe loss for many causes.

The same concept could be applied to people. One person is warm, friendly, inviting engagement at a moderate speed in a light manner. Another individual might be cold, running at a fast pace and be more toxic with external additives. Unless the two people are willing to travel the 18 miles together, mixing the ideas, concepts, sharing and respecting, they too will never become one entity blending with a harmonious union. The waters can part, never to combine now or in the future with each entity continuing on an independent path not ever creating a blend of talent or resources which could help make the world a better place.

The rule of 18 miles™ has emerged as a new principle to be shared in “Cosmic Cow Pie…Connecting the Dots around the World,” derived from the meeting of the waters in the Amazon. The rule requires someone to travel 18 miles with a group or an individual before the “parting of the waters” or “kicking them to the curb.” Today it appears many are quick to pass judgment and make decisions without nurturing the merger or association between people and groups. It takes time and energy to accept and process the value one gives to another. Ridicule, condemnation and misunderstanding others stand in the way of a great mixture. Political agendas or simply personal agendas keep groups and people from combining to create a successful combination.

Thinking about the rule of 18 miles™ could possibly change the course of many a group or relationship by giving the relationship time to see if the temperature, velocity and density can blend to create a harmonious flow between the two. Each group or individual might be coming from a different “temperature” so taking time to warm up to giving each other the opportunity to reflect and then the respect of different thoughts and ideas has to be an integral part of the mixing. Some individuals or groups proceed at a different “velocity” moving faster than the speed of light and others take time to strategically asses the possibility of a merger. Taking the concept of “density” to an organic level brings to mind the content and toxicity of the combination. Utilizing the 18 miles to reach a common temperature, velocity and density ultimately ends up with a successful mixing of the waters and a flow that reaches to the Atlantic to become one with the ocean or larger purpose.

Taking the global lesson from the mixing of the waters at the Amazon River outside Manaus, Brazil and applying to our local situations might create some lasting relationships that are built on understanding and a concerted effort to mix and create one massive entity flowing together combining the uniqueness of each.

The question to ponder will be how do we apply and quantify the The 18 Mile Rule™. How much time or how many twists is 18 miles when trying to blend or mix with an individual or group? Are you willing to implement The 18 Mile Rule™ to help to work together to reduce social  injustice and create a sense of balance around the world and in local communities?

Cosmic Cow Pie...Connecting The Dots Around The World at the Amazon River in Brazil.

Carra Signature Large


Facebook  LinkedIn  twitter  flickr  delicious

Cosmic Cow Pie

Carra Riley

Comment balloon 28 commentsCarra Riley & Declan Kenyon • February 01 2011 10:17PM


This is a little like Capetown where the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans meet.  You can kind of see the line, but nothing like this.  This is amazing.

Posted by Jane Peters, Los Angeles real estate concierge services (Home Jane Realty) almost 10 years ago

And a final thought - During the 18 miles, neither of the waters is "above" the other, as all water seeks its own level. We could all benefit by picturing others at exactly our level...

A thought-provoking post - Thank you!

Posted by Fred Hookham (Keller Williams) almost 10 years ago

Carra - Thanks for the educational information on the Glocal 18 mile rule. I enjoyed reading the blog.

Posted by John Pusa, Your All Time Realtor With Exceptional Service (Berkshire Hathaway Home Services Crest) almost 10 years ago
So fascinating Carra...i love the 18 mile rule...we are so impatient in this society today...definitely food for thought & to you on your amazing journey
Posted by Ginny Gorman, Homes for Sale in Southern RI and beyond (RI Real Estate Services ~ 401-529-7849~ RI Waterfront Real Estate) almost 10 years ago


That's rather amazing and the metaphor is interesting and probably fairly accurate,


Posted by Brian Madigan, LL.B., Broker (RE/MAX West Realty Inc., Brokerage (Toronto)) almost 10 years ago

Carra - I've cruised down the Nile and the Amazon is on my agenda later this year.  I'm taking the 18 mile cruise and will be reminded of your deep questions as I watch the waters of the two rivers meld into one.

Posted by Norma Toering Broker for Palos Verdes and Beach Cities, Palos Verdes Luxury Homes in L.A. (Charlemagne International Properties) almost 10 years ago

Jane ~  It was truely amazing.  We got to see it 3 times... coming into Manaus, going out on a voyage to a small native village then leaving Manaus.

Fred ~  Great addition to the concept!  Would it be ok to include that with the mix?

John ~  It is great fun for me to read your comment and see that someone else saw the analogy.

Ginny ~  Thanks for sharing it with me.  I am out in the middle of the Altlantic for the 3rd day now so reading all the comments makes me feel connected!  Patience is the answer... so the big question is.. how much patience is needed for 18 miles?  walking,rowing, pedaling, running? 

Brian ~  it was totally amazing!  Thanks.

Norma ~ How exciting for you!  I don't think we are going to be on the Nile... we will be in Ghana on Sunday then Cape Town later...I will have to put the Nile on my list for later. How cool to think you will be thinking of this when you come visit the Amazon!

Posted by Carra Riley & Declan Kenyon, Helping people Transition at all ages! (Brokers Guild Cherry Creek Ltd) almost 10 years ago

Came by way of the group email sent out by Margaret.. am appreciative of that and the post.  The post bears reading like the Rio Negro.. a little slower, thinking as you go.  Wonderful post. 

Posted by 1~Judi Barrett, BS Ed, Integrity Real Estate Services -IDABEL OK (Integrity Real Estate Services 118 SE AVE N, Idabel, OK 74745) almost 10 years ago

Arrived thanks to the group email and glad I did. An excellent illustration that some things take time - be patient!

Posted by Gary L. Waters Broker Associate, Bucci Realty, Fifteen Years Experience in Brevard County (Bucci Realty, Inc.) almost 10 years ago

Cara, your post greats me this morning as the sun arrives over Santa Fe. Our community is now in its 401st year and it is my 18th here. What you said about applying this 18 mile rule could be what mixes and holds our Hispanic, Western and Anglo together in so many different ways.  Thank you for giving me another way to think today and a new way to act tomorrow.

Posted by Emily Medvec, Realtor | Serving Santa Fe & Northern NM (eXp Realty LLC) almost 10 years ago

Kinda puts a whole new spin on social networking. And reemphasizes the relationship BUILDING that is so critical to our biz. Carramia, you knocked it out of the park and I don't mean skippin' pebbles! ;)

Posted by Candice A. Donofrio, 928-201-4BHC (4242) call/text (Next Wave RE Investments LLC Bullhead City AZ Commercial RE Broker) almost 10 years ago

Goodness, Carra, how deep can we possibly get? ;-) This was well worthy of the group message that Margaret Rome sent. It does not only apply to real estate relationships, but even to our personal relationships as well. It takes time for relationships to develop between peoples of differing temperments and dispositions, but they can work well, if given the time...

Posted by William James Walton Sr., Greater Waterbury Real Estate (WEICHERT, REALTORS® - Briotti Group) almost 10 years ago

Great post, I enjoy hearing of your adventures and how you connect them back.  Can't wait to hear the next one.

Posted by Steve Scheer, Highlands Ranch Real Estate - Denver Real Estate (Realty Oasis - Metro Brokers) almost 10 years ago

Carra, I’m glad I read the group message. Very interesting post, I can see how the 18 mile rule can be integrated into both our lives and the work place. Can’t wait to read you next post. 

Posted by Suesan Jenifer Therriault, "Inspecting every purchase as if it were my own". (JTHIS-Professional Home Inspection Team) almost 10 years ago

Wow! This phenomenon is wonderful! And like so many things in our natural world, there are wonderful lessons to be found which will work for us in many areas.  Thank you for sharing this...I love how I always learn something new here in The Rain!

Posted by Lisa Orme, Broker/Realtor, ABR, CRS,GRI, PSCS, SFR, Notary Pu (The Master's Key Realty LLC -Windsor, CT - HARTFORD COUNTY) almost 10 years ago

Just stopping by to invite you to the 2nd Annual ActiveRain Super Bowl Party. Hope you’ll come and bring some friends!

Posted by Not a real person almost 10 years ago

Nice analogies Cara, temperature, velocity and density.  I am working with a person right now where this thought process is helpful.  We are off base, his temperature, velocity and density and mine.  Perhaps I should slow down or speed up a bit.  The lesson is the adjustment so that we mesh together for mutual benefit.  Thanks Cara.

Posted by Terry Bishop, Earning Your Trust and Confidence... (Terry Bishop Realty LLC) almost 10 years ago

Getting to see it three different times..what an awesome experience for all of you. I am so pleased with how you share your adventure with all of us.

Continue to be safe and enjoy the marvelous experience.


Posted by Margaret Rome Baltimore 410-530-2400, Sell Your Home With Margaret Rome ( HomeRome Realty 410-530-2400) almost 10 years ago

Hello Everyone.. I have been in Winneba, Ghana, Africa the past few days.. so no Internet Connection.. so great to read your responses! 

To say I am having a hard time processing all the content I have to write about is an understatement but today gives me encouragement to keep writing and sharing the take away's... the good and the not so good...and there are some not so good parts of a trip around the world..... I never slept on a box before so did get that experience and never washed from a bucket except camping so now I can say I have done that too!  More posts to come but again.. with such gratitude for reading what I am doing and sharing.. it makes me a little teary reading all your comments.. so again THANK You for being such great cyber friends. Thank you Miss Margaret for sending out the blast.. I will check on the re-blog issue.

Judy ~  in OK.. thank you so much!  Glad it gave you something to ponder!

Gary ~  I think this was a huge lesson for me as I get older the patience seemed to be on the back burner so now... 18 miles!  That leaves HOPE for a long journey!

Emily ~  What a special way this has touched you!  Thank you for sharing! 

Erica ~  That is the question.. and I know that sometimes I have not given a situation the 18 miles.. so now I have a new way of thinking... thinking global acting local.. changing my own perspective based on a global experience. 

Candyland ~  How cool is that... with the bad Internet.. it takes me hours to get pictures and spell check.. so thank you, thank you... I better get to posting.. I have about 7 more in draft and had been out on the Cosmic Cow Pie... not getting those dots connected... all the comments here makes me think I better get to publishing! 

Williams ~  I am so happy to see the bigger picture for everything.  So special for you to share that too! 

Steve ~  Great to read you are looking for the next.. so I promise to finish another tomorrow.. we are 7 hours ahead and it is about 1 a.m. so better get to bed share another message!

Suesan ~  Thank you so much.. will get finished on one of the next posts!

Lisa  from CT.. it is so fun to learn together.. thank you for your comment!

Russel ~  Thank you for the invite.. There were NO Sports Bars in Winneba, Ghana Africa.. Hope you had a great time!

Terry ~  Glad the post is helping readers to think about how we need to adjust to get through things.

Margaret, Margaret ~  You are sure taking care of the Cosmic Cow Pie... the Rome Way!  Not sure why the re-blog is not working but I will go in and check with the edit button...

Warm aloha to all!


Posted by Carra Riley & Declan Kenyon, Helping people Transition at all ages! (Brokers Guild Cherry Creek Ltd) almost 10 years ago

Carra, AR has disabled the reblog feature for the time being. I will send out a group email each time you post.

Just keep enjoying each and every moment of this once in a lifetime journey and keep discovering there are cow pies all around the world!


Posted by Margaret Rome Baltimore 410-530-2400, Sell Your Home With Margaret Rome ( HomeRome Realty 410-530-2400) almost 10 years ago

Margaret ~ You are such an inspiration... I am enjoying every learning moment.... the Rome Way! Thank you.

Posted by Carra Riley & Declan Kenyon, Helping people Transition at all ages! (Brokers Guild Cherry Creek Ltd) almost 10 years ago

Carra, I am so enjoying your trip! I have just done a Reblog the Rome Way.

Posted by Margaret Rome Baltimore 410-530-2400, Sell Your Home With Margaret Rome ( HomeRome Realty 410-530-2400) almost 10 years ago

Carra - I like your "18 mile rule" and what a wonderful post.  This should be featured!  Beautifully written, great photos, and important, thoughtful concept.

Posted by Gail Robinson, CRS, GRI, e-PRO Fairfield County, CT (William Raveis Real Estate) almost 10 years ago

Margaret ~  You are one special lady!  Thank you so much!

Gail ~  I have just gotten up on the way to Cape Town in the middle of the Atlantic and just appreciate your comment so much!  Thank you for the encouragement.. the lessons from around the world will continue!  Just posted the Lessons from the omelet part 1.

Posted by Carra Riley & Declan Kenyon, Helping people Transition at all ages! (Brokers Guild Cherry Creek Ltd) almost 10 years ago

Carra, your trip is being shared so many ways, as if we are all taking a portion of it with you. That 18 mile rule says a lot for being hasty with first impressions, and maybe just moving along for a while to get to know people better and try to blend the portions of those people's personalities that work best with our complimentary traits. You are connecting the dots so many ways.

Posted by Ed Silva, Central CT Real Estate Broker Serving all equally (Mapleridge Realty, CT 203-206-0754 ) almost 10 years ago

Ed ~  I got a little teary eyed reading your comment!  I am so happy that what I am sharing is meaningful.  I don't think I have ever had this much time to just experience things and reflect on the bigger picture and how I can take it and make sense of it for more balance.  Thanks for taking the time to comment.. It really makes me feel like all of you are with me. 

Posted by Carra Riley & Declan Kenyon, Helping people Transition at all ages! (Brokers Guild Cherry Creek Ltd) almost 10 years ago

Wow, Carra. I sure hope you are going to write a complete book, with pictures of course, when you get back. It would be an extremely interesting read.

Posted by Jim Frimmer, Realtor & CDPE, Mission Valley specialist (HomeSmart Realty West) almost 10 years ago

Dear Carra,

This is fantastic piece. Thought provoking, profound and utterly interesting. I wish you a safe journey and plenty of time to keep writing more posts to allow us to share your journey. Thank you for sharing your experience with us!!!


Posted by Betina Foreman, Realtor, C.N.E., with WJK REALTY (WJK Realty) over 9 years ago