Friday, December 14, 2018

Quotations that kept me going in 2018.


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It is that time of the year again.
Time for YOU to help me get to 
that elusive Number 1 spot in 2018
How do you do that?

The public voting phase is now open 
 and closes on Monday, 31st December 2018.
When you click on the VOTE badge,you will be directed to the SA Blog Awards website. 
Your vote for my blog will automatically be entered.
IMPORTANT!
Voters will be sent a confirmation email, 
which they have to respond to in order to confirm their vote.
You can only vote for one Blog per category.
Please use your vote wisely.
Should you decide to vote for another Blog in the same category I will lose your original vote, 
as your  new vote overrides your initial vote.
You can vote once from each email address
that you have, so multiple votes are legal.

Although 2018 started off like most other years,
for me it ended up very unexpectedly. 
After a relatively simple wisdom tooth extraction,
the anesthetist noticed that my heart rhythm was out of kilter.
An unscheduled visit to my physician followed
and an ECG confirmed what the anesthetist had suspected.
Go to ICU, do not pass go and do not collect R200.00...
Overnight in ICU, which was unsettling as it was a first for me.
This was followed by 4 weeks of medication and then
 a cardioversion procedure where my heart is shocked
back into the correct cadence.
It sounds a lot scarier than it was and as I was under sedation,
I remember nothing of the procedure.
But was you can see from the "before" and "after" ECG readings,
all is back to normal.
A check-up in January will hopefully confirm that all 
is still good and and I can face 2019 with confidence.
As a result of having to face my own mortality,
I started keeping an eye open for motivational sayings that resonated with me.
And this posting, different from my usual travel ones,
contains the best of what I discovered via Facebook.
I specifically did not use Google as I knew 
that I would be overwhelmed.
If any resonate with you, please feel free to copy and share.

If you think that you DON'T have a reason for Being",
think again!

This is the quotation that not only resonated,
but it makes me cry each time I read it.
It is SO true and we let time slip away until it is too late
to make the call or go and visit.

From L to R:
Me, Warren, Pierre, John and Chris
We meet at a local coffee shop almost every morning
to connect and more importantly, as we are all self-employed,
we make this our water-cooler time.
It is this band of brothers that keeps me sane.
When days are dark and friends are few,
we can at least count on each other.


We play the Target Word  that is in the morning newspaper,
we chat about the world and how we might solve all those problems.
It is our therapy and our safe space.
And we would have it no other way.


My hope is that some of these quotations
 might resonate with YOU.
For all those that are experiencing this emotion currently.


For my Dad.
Gone 14 years but with me every day.

The smallest gesture, often spontaneous,
might be the difference that saves someones day.
Or perhaps even their life.

Doing random acts of kindness brings its own rewards.
Try one and you will see what I mean.






Be one of those...

And even though you might not realize it,
you are never alone.

We all have these moments...


I end this posting with this quote from one of my favourite comedians.
Robin Williams, thank you for all the laughs and the tears.
You were part of the tapestry of my life
and your tragic death left me bereft. 
Watching videos of interviews that you did
only reinforces the powerhouse comic genius that you were.

Tuesday, December 11, 2018

I do hate packing!


SA Blog Awards Badge
Click on this button to vote NOW!

It is that time of the year again.
Time for YOU to help me get to 
that elusive Number 1 spot in 2018
How do you do that?

The public voting phase is now open 
 and closes on Monday, 31st December 2018.
When you click on the VOTE badge,you will be directed to the SA Blog Awards website. 
Your vote for my blog will automatically be entered.
IMPORTANT!
Voters will be sent a confirmation email, 
which they have to respond to in order to confirm their vote.
You can only vote for one Blog per category.
Please use your vote wisely.
Should you decide to vote for another Blog in the same category I will lose your original vote, 
as your  new vote overrides your initial vote.
You can vote once from each email address
that you have, so multiple votes are legal.


One would think that having been a travel writer for 17 years,
 packing would, by now,be second nature to me.
But I fear that is not the case. 
I still cringe when it comes to viewing an empty pre-trip suitcase.
I feel much like a writer staring at a blank page, 
waiting for that flash of inspiration.
What to put in first…
If I am driving, the weight and contents of my suitcase
 do not pose a problem…

However, this dynamic changes when I have to board an aircraft.
I tend to leave my packing to the last moment and as a result,
 I have never had a single trip where I have packed and enjoyed it.
 Many years ago a very seasoned traveler gave me the following advice when it came to packing.
Lay everything out on a bed, and then remove 50%.
Now pack and before closing the suitcase remove another 25%.
In retrospect that seemed like good advice at the time,
 but in reality it did not really work.

My well traveled Samsonite suitcase.
I refuse to go anywhere without it!

I have subsequently come up with my own formula,weight.
I know that we are usually allowed about 20kg of check-in luggage and my current goal, irrespective of what I pack is to get that to 10kg or less.
The closest I have come is 12kg, but to be honest, going on a 3 week trip with only one pair of underwear was not a good idea.
Have a packing list I was told…I tried that, but with little success.
“Why”? I hear you ask. 
There were items that I forgot to put ON the list.
I remember going on a trip to Italy and forgetting my deodorant. Trying buying your favourite brand in a store
 where no one speaks English.
I have traveled to Turkey and after spending an entire day shooting pictures in Istanbul, I returned to my hotel only to find that I had left the battery chargers for BOTH cameras back in South Africa.
I could not find a shop that had the required devices,
 so I had to limit my picture taking.


I have packed items knowing that they would not be returning home with me…shoes and tee-shirts specifically
 that I have left in a variety of hotel rooms.
And of course there are always THOSE items that you pack
 and never wear…
like a warm jacket when visiting Dubai in the middle of summer.
Or the long pants that you pack,
 just in case there is a “formal” dinner.
On one particular cruise, I was invited to join the Captain for dinner, but I had packed neither a suit nor a tie.
 I ended up being gifted a tie by the guest relations manager, 
which is currently the only tie I own.
So, if in doubt…leave it out…or perhaps just pack it anyway.
 You can always leave it behind to make room
 for the gifts that you HAVE to bring home.


All the suitcase images are from Hamiltons Tented Camp.
This posting has been based on an article that I wrote
 for the November issue of Skyways magazine.
Currently to be found in the seat pockets
 of all the aircraft in the Airlink fleet

To find out more bout this camp and that they have to offer,
visit their website:

 
The latest addition to my sponsors list...
The Olight SRS2UT Intimidator.
Marketed locally by:

My camera brand of choice for more than 4 decades!
Photo:

Photo:
When it is time to print out my special images,
this is the company that I rely on to do that.

Bush gear to make me blend in...
in comfort and style.

I have worn these shoes in the jungles of India
and on the beaches of Croatia.
Not to mention, many game reserves in Africa.
They are probably the most comfortable pair of shoes
that I have ever owned.

Photo:
When I get home. I rely on this ISP
to provide me with high speed fibre connectivity 
to enable me to get my postings published in record time.

Photo:
This powerbank is my constant companion
 while I am travelling.
It can do up to 4 full re-charges of my phone before
needing to be charged.
Supplied by...

When offered an option...
ALWAYS be Batman.
This time he was standing in front of a picture of 
Col. James Stevenson-Hamiltion,
 after whom this tented camp is named.
The newest of my travelling companions.
To find out more about the collectible Funko range of figurines,
visit:

My new addition, this awesome laptop bag from Solo.
Padded for protection and with enough pockets to keep
almost everything INCLUDING the kitchen sink in,
this is definitely an stylish addition to any business presentation.
Be it in the boardroom or the bush.
This bag can also be worn as a backpack. 
There are straps in a hidden compartment that can be deployed
when you need both hands for other purposes.
To find out more about the stylish Solo range,
visit:


A new "tool" in my camera bag.
This locally made product was indispensable when using a long lens.
The ball and socket might look simple...and it is, 
which is why it should be in the gear bag of every serious photographer.
This locally made, deceptively simple device is ideal 
for tracking birds in flight or animals in motion.
The base can be used on a beanbag or a tripod,
with the ball being fitted to the camera.
The simplicity of the device allows to to move from supported
to hand held in a fluid motion.
There is also a version that can be used on a car window.
To see more about the product, 
visit their Facebook page:
Or order directly from:





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and may not be used without permission