Tuesday, October 17, 2017

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Musings of mine: Rambling Mind on This and That #12

Quote of the day: 

Laugh and the world laughs with you, snore and you sleep alone. -Anthony Burgess

Train Runners

What's one of the funniest things to see when walking along a busy street? Surely one of mine has to be the sight of people racing to the station to catch a train. Early morning, rush hour, picture a 100 yard dash minus the Olympics. I assume nobody wakes up in the morning thinking "I am going to leave the house later than usual, and try to make a run for the train station!". If you are new to a big city or town it could be an alarming sight to see. For one, you are not sure if they are being chased or even worse if they are running up to catch up with you. They are definitely certain to give Usain Bolt a run for his money.

Don't Just Watch the Leaves Fall

It's that time of the year again. When dreams collide, when plans get evaluated and when trees shed leaves. Before long people tell anyone who cares to listen 'I can't wait for summer to come' and everyone nods approvingly. Say goodbye to the heat, sunshine, cold showers and ice cream.Say goodbye to the skimpy outfits, sun glasses, and very cold drinks. Alas, say hello to cold rain, gloomy weather and hot drinks. Say hello to heavy clothing, scarves and shorter days, longer nights. Don't just watch the leaves fall, go on with your normal life. Hibernate and all.

Time Snatchers

Why do we always do the opposite of what we mean? If you enjoy meeting up/planning events with people this one is for you. Beware of anyone who tells you "I'll be there in five minutes," only to show up half an hour later with a ton of excuses. If you say you are five minutes away then you must be close by, no? As in you are just around the corner and walking to the specified location. Worse still some will tell you "I am on my way," but what they basically mean is "I lost track of time. I am just about to shower, and who knows how long it will take me to decide what to wear, figure out the route, and check the weather app". These people are perpetual time snatchers- who will do anything to keep you away from your sanity.

Selective Memory

Ever get a blitz of forgotten memory right out of the blue? Sneaky, and unannounced. How is it that you recollect such a moment from years ago, but fail to remember what you had for lunch on the first day of the month, or where you left your keys, or why you are standing in the middle of the room trying hard to figure out why you had walked in there in the first place.

The Countdown

Just in case you are wondering how many days are left till Christmas, it's 69. That's roughly 10 weeks from now. Shocking yes? Well what's more shocking is the fact that since August -think nice summery days and barbecues, a few shops have set up their Christmas section, completely confusing those of us who can only tolerate seeing festive decorations in late November or even early December.

Peace. Love. Light* 

Current Listen: Donny Hathaway - Someday We'll All Be Free 

Saturday, October 14, 2017

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3 Things to Inspire Your Weekend: #71

Quote of the day: 

Just for today, smile a little more. Just for today, ask someone how he or she is really doing. Just for today, remember, while some may have it better than you do, there are others whom definitely have it worse than you! Just for today, just let go, just for today. 
-James A. Murphy

Image credit: AlexandriaPoliceDept

Heroes are everyday people doing extraordinary things as seen in the case of Earl Melchert who left work for home to pick up a forgotten item. As he prepared to head back to work he noticed someone about half a mile away who turned out to be missing 15-year-old Jasmine Block who disappeared from her home about a month earlier. She had escaped from her abductors-one of whom was a family acquaintance, and had been knocking on doors to get help. Melchert recognised her face from the news. Later, the Alexandria Police Department offered him the reward money of $7,000 and he refused to accept it believing that the family needed it more than he did. He therefore gave the money back to Jasmine and her family.

Image credit: JordanBrand/GettyImages

Michael Jordan, 54, stepped up his philanthropy by donating $7 million to fund two health facilities for poor communities in Charlotte, North Carolina. With the hope to provide an avenue to affordable and quality health care to individuals in the community with little or no health care as well as providing a healthier future for the children and families they serve. Jordan has supported several charities in the past including the Nevada Cancer Institute, Cats Care, St.Jude Children's Research Hospital and Kids Wish Network.

As seen on Arch DailyWest Yard Farm

Architects: van Ellen + Sheryn
Location: Devon, UK
Photographs: Richard Downer Photography


A refurbishment and extension of an 18th century farmstead providing a large and contemporary family home which makes use of the wooded valley setting.

Theme:  Situated within a conservation area and National Park, and sitting on a 60 acre wooded valley, a single storey steel framed glass structure was built in between the farmhouse and barn thus creating a new heart to the building. A blend of old and new, the surrounding woodland supplies a generous amount of fuel for wood burning stoves and solar thermal panels provide much of the hot water requirements of the hosuehold.

Peace. Love. Light* 

Thursday, October 12, 2017

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Poem: The Way of Overlords

Quote of the day: 

In the light, we read the inventions of others; in the darkness we invent our own stories. 
-Alberto Manguel

How sweet the morning air is
Like the lovely scent of cut grass
Furnishing pleasure to the soul
Amid the chaos and rush of bodies

I soon became lost
In white clouds of smoke
And just for a cursory moment
It was all deathly quiet

Time stood still
I envisaged utopia
Fond memories became unfastened
Like a thread holding a fabric together
Songs that I hummed
Races that I ran
A rush of blood to the head
Blue shadowy ghosts cradle
Sun kissed and love-drunk

The clouds disapeared
Taking with them paradise and reality
Alas the white smoke was man made
I watched it all disband
As an overlord glided down the street
Long brown coat flapping in the wind
E-cigarette in hand
Vaping to his heart's desire
I could see his next victim
Ensnared in a trail of billowing smoke

This is written in narrative form and explores vaping and its after effects -usually a ball of smoke left by brash individuals self-righteously gliding away from their creation. The poem is also a recollection of moments, time and place, purpose, pleasure and emotions. Again, it is open to different interpretations. 

Current Listen: 

Peace. Love. Light* 

Tuesday, October 10, 2017

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What does it mean to be human

Quote of the day: 

Employ your time in improving yourself by other men's writings, so that you shall gain easily what others have labored hard for. -Socrates

According to Plato man is a being in search of meaning. The meaning of life is found in every moment and every event we experience. Asides our biological evolution and the science behind our existence, and characteristics, what does it really mean to be human? We have survived and evolved through the years through self-preservation. We can adapt to various life changes quickly. We have knowledge and the capacity to use our brains to solve complex problems. And the list goes on.

But what does it mean to be human, to be a person who has feelings even? No one can exist in a void or vacuum. To be human is to be alive and filled with energy, an internal fire that never burns out, it is freedom and the ability to determine your own path in life. It is the ability to embrace the light while acknowledging that darkness exist. It is separating fact from fiction, contentment from regret, strength from weakness, and logic from ignorance.

The way we function is not just mechanical -unthinking and unemotional, no we are emotional beings vying for attention and striving for wisdom, and no doubt most of the decisions we make in life get influenced by our emotions. To be human is to be unique, and different. And not being afraid to admit to the latter. As no two minds are the same. Everyone has a unique smell and fingerprint. Each person dreams and has the ability to make choices, to acquire knowledge and be accountable for their own actions while embracing a fundamental maxim-and frowning upon the maxim of others.

And then there's love which we never seem to give out as much as we'd like to. We take more than we give. To be human is to form relationships, to share connections and bond with others, to show compassion when none is expected, and to embrace the philosophy that how we treat others is in effect how we treat ourselves. Being human is being aware. Being noble. Being able to fall and stand up as many times as possible. Being human is doing ordinary things in an extraordinary way.

Peace. Love. Light* 

Current Listen: Johnny Mathis - Chances Are

Saturday, October 07, 2017

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3 Things to Inspire Your Weekend: #70

Quote of the day: 

Life's a circle. There are no lines we can cross. - F.K. Preston

Image credit: BravoTV

Right after the devastating hurricane that swept Haiti in 2010, one chef took it upon himself to create
a means by which those affected could survive through meals. José Andrés founded World Central Kitchen with the belief that food can be an agent of change. Today it has grown into a network of chefs around the world who are creating smart solutions to hunger and poverty.
In the aftermath of hurricane Maria in Puerto Rico which left the country with no power, and with citizens finding it harder to access food, José Andrés has joined a long list of people and organizations who have stepped in to help. With local chefs and volunteers from his non-profit, José Andrés has managed to visit and prepare 80,000 meals for those affected with plans to reach the 100,000 mark.

Image credit: Tim Newton

It is one thing to wake up to the sounds of birds or at worst the occasional visit from a wild animal. Living in Alaska for instance bear sightings are regular. So when photographer Tim Newton woke up to scratching noises on his front door he feared the worst. Peeking out the window he was amazed to see lynx kittens with their mother playing on his front porch. Instinctively he fetched his camera to capture the moment. The lynx is usually a solitary animal, with a short tail, and characteristic tufts of black hair on the tips of its ears, as well as large padded paws for walking on snow. It's rare to stumble on one, not to talk of a large family of eight. 

As seen on Arch DailyThe Wedge House

Architects: Schema Architecture & Engineering
Location: Athens, Greece
Photographs: Nikos Alexopoulos, Marianna Athanasiadou

Brief: A custom built single family home on a steep terrain, a house blending in well with the environment.

Theme:  Situated in a challenging location and surrounded by mountains and pine tress, the house is distinctive, with split levels accommodating the steepness in topology. Two distinct blocks with tall glass windows visible from the exterior gives the house a sense of space, and the swimming pool is a nice addition to the fantastic views all round.

Peace. Love. Light* 

Current Listen: Debussy - Rêverie