Ah the quiet zone on the GO train. Reminds me of the trains and buses in Japan. Little old ladies bundled up against the cold and hushing anything that makes a sound above a few decibels. Or forcing you to go to a compartment of the train with the toilets and luggage – that was an acceptable place to use your voice.
Also reminds me of Finland and taking the bus to school. That was mainly due to the advent of the cell phone and everyone having one of these new novelty items. All you could hear on the bus was the clicking of cell phone keys or the odd ring and a spattering of chatter.
I’ve made the conscious choice to be productive and write on the train each day. It doesn’t have to be a novella but it should be relevant.
A low rumble
Relevance is domain and audience dependent. Maybe that’s what I’ll name my dependents when the time comes – Domain and Audience.
Saturday Arrived Friday and spent most of the time getting things ready. Most of the people showed up on Saturday and I had the pleasure of cooking steaks to perfection. Since I hate doing dishes and love cooking, I spent quite a bit of time cooking lunches and dinners.
I’ve been hitting on the points that I made for myself – get in the water everyday, keep moving and write everyday. I’ve gone for two jogs since I’ve been up here, pushing myself each day. It has cooled off for the most part, but today I’ll avoid the jogging and stick with basic strengthening exercises.
Monday The light hit the dock just right – throwing off the perfect amount of heat to put you back into a stupor after your morning coffee and breakfast. The water had little waves in it, kicked up by the light breeze from the south. The fresh country air filling my nose with the smell of cedar and pine. I sit writing at the beer pong table, my espresso steaming in a mug and eyes drifting to refreshing water.
Three boats, three docks (one to be removed today), and eleven other bodies sunning themselves. Yesterday was the first day with everyone here, and today will be the first full day with the whole crew here. Last night we chose a team name (a play on the name for the tv show of Alaskan fishermen in the Bering Sea) and today will be the first round of beer pong.
I’ve kept my promise – ran 30 minutes yesterday morning and swam for another 15 out to the point and back, wrote over 500 words, and spent some time planning out work for August. Today I’ll spend some time working on new jobs, swimming farther and stretching sore muscles, and of course writing 500 words. I’ll try to take more pictures today as well.
Dock removal today and we were in for a nice surprise.
Yes that’s a water snake and yes there were two people who were terrified of snakes, one of them being in the water at the time. Long story short, the snake peacefully moved on, the dock was removed and order was restored to the universe. Physical fitness for the day involved beer bobbing (explained below) and chasing the resident chipmunk – Chippy – around the cottage.
Beer Bobbing – take your ordinary PFD and turn it upside down. Next you can either zip it up beforehand or do that once you have it on. I opted for pre-zippage as it just made life easier and I don’t have a gut any more. So zip it up then hold the PFD with the buckle facing away (back of the PFD facing your legs) and step one leg through each of the arm holes. Pull up until you can feel your testicles in your throat. Slide, jump, bellyflop into the water, swim back to the dock for your beer and let the current drift you away from the dock towards your friends. A note of caution – ensure you are wearing lots of sunblock/sunscreen, sunglasses, hat and anything else you have to block the sun; after four beers you will forget about the sun and be having too much fun.
Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday
In all honesty these days kind of blur together. I do remember Beer Pong, missing out on 3 Man (I’ll have to learn how to play another time), a few boat rides and being part of several teams including Team Drunk and Team McDonald’s cashier (while playing Cranium). I did go for a long run, suffered from heat stroke and had to avoid the sun for a bit. In that time I managed to get some reading done, five days of the 90 Day Til Your Novel, and snoozed in a few Muskoka chairs.
Sunday and Monday Most people left on Saturday so Sunday was a very relaxing day. It was windy and rainy for most of the morning and early afternoon, cleared up for a few hours, then the sun dipped down and the remaining four people were sad. I remember kicking butts at Phase 10 and getting an amazing sleep in on Sunday. Monday we packed up and were on the road by 11am back to civilization.
I needed the time off. Things had been getting a little hectic, frustrating and my little brother had just left for the Town of Dawson City. I got to meet some new people, had fun and forgot about my worries for a bit. Now life is back in full swing and I’m looking forward to my time up to bat. Until next time…..
It was a dark room – light coming in from the street casting off the slightest of silhouettes. As I slowly became aware of what was happening I realized that I was experiencing a full blown gastrointestinal orgy – and everyone wanted to leave NOW. Waking up at 4:30am to a gastrointestinal emergency is a nightmare. Throw in the fact that I was sleeping in a place having never set foot in before, lights are off, the stress of having to catch a plane, and a vague recollection of where the bathroom is supposed to be – it was quite a fright.
It started with lunch at Magnolia’s Chinese restaurant in Niagara Falls, followed by home made tuna casserole (homemade hummus was the substitute cream of mushroom soup) and salad in Toronto, a few pitchers of Amsterdam Amber beer, and to top it off the Kings Crown Nachos at Sneaky Dees in Toronto with more beer. It was a day of catching up with friends and getting to know new ones. It started off innocent enough – food, followed by beer followed by more food. It took a while for the orgy to get into full swing but as I left Sneaky Dees, I knew that it was not going to be a normal night.
The worst part is the orgy is still in progress. As I write this, 18,000 feet up in the air on my way to Chicago (flight UA 541), I’ve abused the toilet and the ear drums of fellow passengers twice. Some of them look at me with shame, others take pity on me but all are grateful to not be in my shoes.
United Airlines – your toilet paper sucks. Of all of the cost cutting measures, nothing engenders the scorn of your flying passengers more than knowing that you’ve cheaped out by utilizing wafer thin sand paper that tears when you grab at it and somehow manages to shred skin when using it. Raise you prices by a few cents for each flight, we won’t mind. Ask yourself UA, who really wants to poop in a tin can thousands of feet in the air surrounded by strangers? I’ll tell you who, people who have no choice.
In all honesty, I ate way too much only because I was having a good time and it’s been a while since I had been out socializing and drinking. However I blame the refried beans in the nachos for my current predicament. Refried beans are now on my “I hate you for the rest of my life because of what you make my body do against itself” list – to be avoided at all costs. I think I’m on my way to becoming a ‘picky’ eater like my friends who claim they can’t eat gluten or lactose.
On a side note, this is my 100th post since I left for Sendai, Japan October 15, 2010. It’s weird to think that in three weeks it will have been a year since Japan was rocked by an earthquake, tsunami and nuclear disaster. My heart goes out to all of those whose lives were devastated by the tragedy and to those who are helping them to rebuild.
Due to recent events, I’m considering retirement. The thought of lounging around at home in a bathrobe, drinking gin and tonic, and frolicking around the seniors centre with a bunch of other geriatrics appeals to me. Well change geriatrics to beach bunnies and I’m in.
Over the next few weeks I’m going to chronicle the process of shutting down a business, the decisions that were made and insights into the mind of one of the greatest businessmen that I know – that is if he’ll let me. More on that in a few days.
A second blog update in a week is on the way. Web update is done and facebook page is done as well. I forgot how easy it can all be if I remember the process and system that I’ve put in place – before that it was a drag and a time vampire.
Another youngin’ is spreading her wings and spending 3 months helping at an orphanage for developmentally challenged girls in the Ukraine – more info here. I wish that I could be at the fundraiser and wish her the best in her travels. Good luck Stef!
I’ve found that doing a short workout before dinner has helped me the most over the past few weeks – not that I’ll be able to continue it, but just that it’s the only thing that I’ve been able to do more than once in the past few months and it’s kind of fun.
Ok, sleep beckons. I know that I’m forgetting the whole reason for writing this but it’s late and tomorrow is a new day. Remember if you’re not getting what you want, you need more hugs (either give them or ask for them).
Over the past few weeks the drama component in my life has been increasing slightly bit by bit until today it finally came to a head. To say the least, I was stunned for a few moments, gave my head a shake and thought “Huh?” I realize that within any type of relationship there are times when miscommunication will happen. I also realize that there are times when bringing up past conversations will happen as well.
Hold on, I’ll back things up a moment. I tend to be the type of person who has a conversation with someone and if I see them next week will have no idea what I last said to them. Hell most days I don’t remember what I had for breakfast, so I now have the same thing to keep things consistent and so I only have to remember one thing. So when someone brings up a past conversation (could have been two days ago or two years ago) and that conversation came to a conclusion, I’ve forgotten about the details and only remember the conclusion – ‘ok got it no tickling’ or ‘ok got it interest only payments’. The details are gone.
So when someone brings up a past conversation once I try to tell them – I have no idea what you’re talking about. If it happens a second time, I try to sit them down and quietly explain “I have no freaking idea what your talking about. If it’s in the past, it’s in the past. It’s not that I don’t care, it’s not relevant to me today.” If it happens a third time, I complain about it on my blog and send them an email. If it happens a forth time, I try to limit the amount of time that I spend with that person as they’re just not getting it and we’re going to get into frustrating disagreements over who said what and the meaning of said discussion. Too much drama.
I prefer to live my life this way – what has happened in the past is in the past. I cannot change it, I try not to relive it, and if it’s really important I’ll take a picture or a video. I live for today. Chances are that today I’ll say something that contradicts what I said yesterday – or yesteryear – because I’m continuously growing and learning new things each day. If it’s something that I care about and I’m putting a fair bit of time into thinking about it, I’ll probably change my mind in the future. Concerning the future, I’ll do my best to influence it, avoid making the same mistakes as the past and try not to live in a fantasy world of make believe.
It’s not that I don’t like drama – love seeing it on tv – it’s just that I don’t have a lot of time for it right now. Maybe people need to take a deep breath and ask themselves “would he intentionally go for the worst case scenario?” or “would he really do that – cause it really pisses me off?” I try not to be a prick and chances are that there is something being misinterpreted and could be corrected by asking a few pointed questions.
Life is too short to be caught up in drama. I plan on living each day like it’s my last and looking for the next big adventure. Have fun!
Ok, I’ll admit that a week ago I was not as happy. For as long as I can remember, I’ve dreaded birthdays. They seem to creep up on me around the same time of year the weather goes from happy and joyous to absolute misery and wetness.
I started the day off by waking up like most days around 5:20am. This time I promptly went back to sleep until 7:30am.
I managed a quick trip into the metropolis of Alliston to get a few things, then I was able to start my adventure! I drove north into Creemore to find an elusive beer that is sold at a gas station. Well it’s technically not beer – there’s no alcohol content. You buy the 2L bottle for less than $5 and then you pop in a yeast pill and wait for 14 days. After 14 days, you can say “NOW I have beer!” Couldn’t find it and wasn’t really willing to get out of the car to look around gas stations (yes there are two gas stations in Creemore) for a beverage that I would have to wait 14 days to consume. This trip was all about today and living in the moment.
I continued driving north through the lively and vivacious town of Stayner and watched all of the little teenie boppers march from the high school to Tim Hortons for their caffeine fix and lunch. Normally, I’d say good for them, but it just so happens that Tim Hortons had a little trouble with homophobia (see related articles here and here and here and here and here) and I did not feel like joining the teenie boppers for homophobe coffee.
Onwards north I hit the junction between Wasaga Beach and Collingwood – where you go from 80 km/h down to 60km/h if you’re lucky. I was not – 45km/h in a line of 20 cars all slowly making their way to Collingwood. Eventually I made it to Collingwood, drove around a little bit and decided to grab something to eat. Fast food was out of the question (I’m 30 now I have to watch what I eat!) and I wanted to find something within walking distance to the lake shore.
I parked and paid a total of $0.50 for an hour of parking then walked to the Huron Club. I selected a veggie and chicken curry that did not disappoint and washed it down with a pint of Creemore beer (ever since I drove through the town I was thinking about it non-stop). I paid my bill and walked north to the lake shore. I dipped my toe into Georgian Bay, took some pictures as mementos, then walked back and made the drive back south.
I opted for the non-geriatric traffic jammed route back towards Wasaga Beach and headed straight south along the Collingwood Airport. The road went from ‘paved and smooth’, to ‘paved in the 80’s’, to ‘unpaved and bumpy’ to ‘holy shit I’m now a rally car driver!’ Needless to say it was fun and the view was amazing.
Dinner was amazing and I spent two hours in a sauna. The celebration is not over as I will be in Toronto later on this week to catch up with people that I did not see on Oct 25th. It also turns out that my body can feed 74 hungry weasals – how about you?
The goal for the rest of the week remains the same – increase income by 10% and get a minimum of 63 points each day. I have not done any fitness for the past two days, but I have had a few new projects come into my inbox. Today was basically a recovery day to prep for tomorrow. I’m aiming for the best day ever tomorrow and I’m armed with 5 questions that will turn everything around.
It should also be noted that all of the landscape pictures were taken with my little blackberry while driving at least 85 km/h.
Sunday Run – 50 minutes – 1 point / Monday workout – 45 minutes – 1 point
Marketing points – 196 points for talking to new people (yes that’s 196 people that I spoke to on the phone or received a response from via email) / 2 points for new contracts
Total points for the day – 200!
A little point on ignorance. Every day I seem to fight against ignorance. Most of the time it centres around the theme of finance and money, but over the past week it’s been more around computers / IT / social media as a marketing tool. It turns out that people are lazy. I guess I used to be part of that majority – that is until I discovered a magical thing called Google (and YouTube). Don’t know how to use bookmarks in your web browser? Google “how to use bookmarks in a web browser” or look up the same thing on YouTube – goodness me – step by step instructions on how to do it? You’ve got to be kidding me! Hold on, you mean I can do that for any topic? You mean there are other people in the world who’ve had this problem in the past?! (note the sarcasm please).
Tomorrow will be a half-day for work – probably the morning but it will depend on a few factors. I’m so psyched as I’ll be turning 30 with nothing solid planned aside from being open minded. 😉