Slow Down !!!

“It’s a blur”. It is unfortunate isn’t it that we always have something to do, somewhere to be, someone to meet, or something (else) to see. Life is a never ending list of …something. This photo taken on one of my favorite hikes in the Gatineau Park (Quebec) is a sad result of a mind filled with something else; the beauty of the park is simply a blur.
Slow down…appreciate the beauty before you. Even better – STOP and take it all in. Feel the wind on your face, rain in your hair, and the fresh air in your lungs…



The Importance of having FUN !

FUN. It is a simple word, one of the shortest words in the English alphabet.

FUN. Say it again


Isn’t is bizarre, such an easy word to spell, such an easy word to say.

How many times a day to you say ‘FUN’, and how many times a day to you say ‘FUN’ ?

Most importantly, how many times a day to you actually have FUN ????.


These photos are from a couple of weeks ago. We were traveling by boat from Rottnest Island back to Freemantle (Western Australia). I usually get seasick in big waves – and, sure enough, on the return trip there were plenty of big waves. Even before the boat was untied from the dock, my stomach was starting to churn. My wife also gets seasick, and immediately headed for the lower deck, and sat beside the window to stare at the horizon.

I went to the uppermost deck at the very back of the boat – thinking if I have to puke, better to do it over the side of the boat…on the downwind side. Standing beside me was a young woman. She was enthusiastic. For her, the bigger the waves, the better. As the boat left the shelter of the harbor,  into the big waves, her simile get bigger and bigger. A few moments later, she was hanging on with both hands, and a huge smile from ear to ear.

So sensed my lack of enthusiasm and said ‘ If you are having fun – then you wont get seasick‘. Easy for you to say.

My stomach was starting to churn. I could taste that pre-puke in my mouth.

The spray from the big waves hitting the side of the boat was whipped to the back of the boat, curling back into an eddy to soak those of standing along the back rail. If I puked now, it would surely blow back in the eddy and cover everyone standing near me.

Beside me, she was hooting and hollering, having so much fun. She was getting soaked from the warm ocean spray. There was no doubt she was  having fun. I needed to get out of this sick frame of mind. In desperation, I pulled out my waterproof camera from my pocket and asked her if I could take a few photos. ‘Sure’ – she said, ‘as long as you are having Fun’. Click, click, click. The camera helped. Then she asked to switch places so that I could get the full force of the spray – that would certainly distract me. Sure enough, by the time the boat entered Freemantle harbor, I was thoroughly soaked – and had completely avoided getting seasick.

Who ever she is – Thank you. You managed to take me from a potentially miserable situation, to now, actually wanting to get on a boat on a day with big waves.


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Being away…what happens when I come back ?

I am almost three months into a 10 month journey.

Long flights, bus rides and train trips have given me time to think

Sometimes to think about nothing, let my mind decide

Sometimes conscious effort and thought.

I’ve thought about home, friends, where we have been  and where we are going

Also, in a selfish way, I’ve been thinking about me.

What do I want to remember about this trip, how will it change me, and will I simply slide back into my past life  after leaving for 10 months ?

Do What Makes You Happy

Do What Makes You happy




These kids – they are doing something that makes them Happy. Bicycling through the puddles in the rain. Getting soaked, or even falling over in the mid was no problem. They went biking it the rain for no other reason – Simply they did it because it made them happy.

Think back to your childhood, and doing things that made you happy. Doing some of those things, unfortunately, probably got you in trouble. Yes, you got in trouble for not rearing a rain coat, not wearing rubber boots, getting your clothes covered with mud, and probably for getting your bicycle wet too.
We adults still do things that make us happy, but it isn’t the same. Adult would probably fuss about what to wear, would the splashed mud wash out of their clothes, wear a hat to keep their hair dry ?.
So – what are you waiting for ?


Go out – and — Do What Makes You Happy
Don’t question why, don’t over think, don’t worry what others would think, or what others would say.
Just do it.

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In culinary terms ‘stewing can best be described as the process of combining solid food ingredients that have been cooked in liquid and served in the resultant gravy. Ingredients in a stew can include any combination of vegetables (such as carrots, potatoes, beans, peppers and tomatoes, etc.). While water can be used as the stew-cooking liquid, wine, stock, and beer are also common. Seasoning and flavourings may also be added. Stews are typically cooked at a relatively low temperature (simmered, not boiled), allowing flavors to mingle (

No – this isn’t a blog post about cooking, though the analogy can be used to describe my emotions and physical state.  Although I have taken a Thai cook class and a basic sense of what ingredients and spices are added to the typical Thai meal, in this case, the solid food in this stew is me and my and my family (and mother in-law), traveling for a month in Thailand. We are not used to the heat in south east Asia, to the analogy for stewing in the heat is quite true.

Add some Thai spices; shallots (Culture), garlic (language), green and red chilies (history), dried or fresh coriander (religion), Thai chili powder (festivals), galangal (wildlife-elephants, poisonous snakes and giant insects), green peppercorns (interactions with other tourists), lemongrass (soldiers in the streets – carrying flowers and bottled water (not guns), turmeric (missing friends), kaffir lime leaves,  and fresh basil (incredibly gently and polite people).

As in a typical stew, we have added large amounts of bottled water to the broth, and beer ;>

All those spices need time to simmer and blend to allow the flavors to mingle.

Even after a month in Thailand, the flavor of the stew is not quite right. Too Spicy or Too Sweet ?.  My taste buds can’t seem to get it right; and my heart and emotions need more time to stew and enjoy all of the Thai spices and flavors.