When Pandora Peoples arrived in Provincetown, “it was like a big X-mas marked the spot!” she remembers. “All the little ghostly sea captain’s houses blanketed by snow, twinkling with candles in the windows, and WOMR angel DJs bumping jazz remixes through poorly insulated windows on Commercial Street!”
She connects Ptown to her own hometown in many ways. Peoples “pretty much grew up on tofu” on Venice Beach, California, which “smelled of honeysuckle and night blooming jasmine—or Ray’s pizza and dogshit, depending on which way the wind blew!” Her parents took her to a Terrence McKenna book reading when she was thirteen and “I’ve been inhaling nagchampa ever since!”
Peoples studied at the Dominion Herbal College and trained in herbalism and ceremony with Cecilia Garcia, a Chumash Shaman from Mexico whose grandparents were all traditional healers. “She would scarf down pretension and presumption in a single bite. She taught me that everything is medicine. Friendship, laughter, song, food, even pain.” Peoples is an angel medium practicing herbal medicine, nutritional counseling, and shamanism. “My office is in Eastham, and we’re in the middle of a bird sanctuary, surrounded by walnut trees, blackberry and raspberry bushes, and Concord grapevines. Surrounded by art and crystals, I pour strong medicinal tea for my clients and welcome them with a magical herbal footbath. Sessions involve mind-body health, contacting departed relatives or getting guidance on their life purpose and its manifestations from their spirit guides. Shamanic healing sessions involve working with the angel energies and sound healing.”
So how did she connect with the community radio station? Peoples laughs. “WOMR called to me like a ship on a sonic sea, beckoning this music-starved fisherwoman! I’ve been casting lines and catching interviews with delicious guests ever since.” Her spoken-word show is called Healing Wisdom and focuses on the metaphysical side of life. “I chat with folks about mind-body- spirit healing techniques, the therapeutic nature of art, ancient cultures, global traditions, muses, and so forth,” she says.
Guests on her show have included Grammy-winning musicians, bestselling authors, professors of religion, psychology, and philosophy, doctors, herbalists, healers, and artists of all disciplines. “Listeners come away with insight into the way others think. There’s nothing like a good nonfiction story. Stories are full of symbolism. I think people learn from metaphors as much as parables, and life is jam-packed with metaphors we only discover in the recounting of our tales. New perspectives we derive by imagining ourselves walking a mile in another person’s shoes can help us to gain access to a deeper understanding of ourselves. I aim to deliver some valuable information on health and wellness and feeding that creative fire in us all.”
And what about her name? Peoples didn’t just arrive in Provincetown at Christmastime; that was how she came into the world, as well. “I was born a week before Christmas to hippy parents in a Venice bungalow surrounded by two midwives, a godfather painting my mother in the nude, and an orange cat,” she says. “Upon my emergence onto the living room futon, they discovered a birthmark on my forehead. It looked to them to be a woman holding a box with birds flying out of it. Like all good tea readers, my parents took it as a sign. They looked up the etymology of Pandora and discovered that it means all-giving and all-gifted.”
Which certainly is an apt description of Pandora Peoples and her connections to WOMR and to Ptown!
Photography by Sara MacFarlane