Category: THOUGHTS

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Music – always an answer!

Another day when I can say music once again makes the grade and makes the day. Music is such a powerful healer and comforter. It helps me work, helps me change moods, helps me wake up, helps me stay awake on a drive it’s just got such power. I have several posts here already about my love for music and I’m sure there will be more in the future. Music really is the essence of my mood at any moment and can lift my spirit. Most of my friends have a favourite artist or a favourite type of music. I love so many types of music I can’t even fathom being limited to one genre. Between YouTube Music and Spotify and MixCloud – well I have my ears full. The last couple of weeks whilst reading and studying I’ve gone back to classical and I can instantly get in the zone to read. I’d prefer to be able to read in silence, but when there is other activity around that I need to block out the classical has been perfect. I have 2 playlists on spotify that are my reading playlists. They are both classical music – this one is the longer of the 2 playlists. I have another playlist that is over 25 hours long that I call the ‘everything playlist’ it’s got the sort of music that I think most people can relate to. Some of the music I like is too much for most people so my ‘Everything Playlist’ bridges the divide. I like all the music on it but there are a lot more the classics on it than I listen to these days. Great music of all genres from the 50s. 60s, 70s, 80s, 90s and today but all of a feel that can meet...

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Sunsets and music

I’ve found life has a way of making us stop and smell the roses or get pricked by their thorns. Sometimes the thorn prick is the wakeup call needed to reevaluate objectives and perspectives. Really though, it is the smell of the flowers and the lush beauty of the wonders around us that can ground us whilst simultaneously uplifting us above the fog of cloudy visions that would impede progress. Music has been a staple of mine throughout my life. Music has always dissipated any fog that might seemm to block the view. I can get lost in music it’s like a dream that surrounds me and transports me almost anywhere. As a child in Grenada I would love to go to bed early on a weekend night, not because I wanted to sleep but because I could listen to the music from the parties I would have to stretch my ears to here. The variety of combo bands or steel band practice music was my heaven. Nights with particularly loud music which I know my parents didn’t care for because of the loudness were my favourite nights. When I came to the USA, right after I got a job a job as a janitor, my first purchase with my new found wealth was a small portable radio which I had taped to my industrial size vacuum cleaner. That radio and I were inseperable, I slept with it under my pillow at night and would stay up to all hours of the night tuning into some new type of music. In Grenada there were only a few am radio stations on island and then one FM radio station we could tune in from Trinidad on weekends sometimes. The variety of music on the radio in the States was amazing to...

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Another year around the sun – ‘what you think, you are’

“You’re not what you think you are, but what you think, you are” -William James So today marks that all important date – not that important to me but a worthy tool, my birthday. I’ve never been big on birthdays – (I mean never since I’ve been an adult). We didn’t make a big fuss when I was a kid over birthdays either, but certainly, as a kid birthdays seemed pretty important. As I’ve gotten older and wiser, birthdays have become a good time to reflect and consider activities of renewal. I’m only a few years away from the big 60 and so the inclination might be to start thinking in terms of concerns over “aging” but this isn’t the outlook I want to embrace for myself or for others for that matter. Age is nothing more than a number. How can a number define me or anyone else? To accept or act like there is a disadvantage to getting older is to embrace the idea of limits and limitations for yourself and others. Instead of thinking of how old myself or another person is, it is really about the significance of becoming more aware, more wise and knowing. Advancing in a manner measured by years and numbers doesn’t have to define a cycle of anything short of improvement. Instead of thinking, advancing years, just think ‘advancing’ and, defining ‘advancing’ in terms of forward movement and motion, is a good thing worthy of gratitude for each moment in life. I think back at my younger years when I didn’t seem to know how to be grateful for the moments. The moments, hours, days and years just seemed a culmination of bad things. I would dwell on the things that went wrong instead of finding the little things to be grateful...

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Living in the ‘now’

Living in the ‘now’ is living in the present. Think about it, ‘now’ is a ‘present’. I can’t do anything about yesterday or tomorrow but I can make the most of this moment in life now. For the last couple of years I have really been more conscious of the active decision to do my best to be true to living in the ‘now’ and being grateful for the fact that now is a present worth cherishing. This doesn’t mean that I don’t prepare for the future. I go to work to make a living to pay my rent and I tend to be the sort of person prepared for unexpected situations that may arise. This doesn’t mean I focus on the preparation it’s just that being prepared is a part of of my well-being.. I don’t worry about what could go wrong I just focus on making the most of now. A friend of mine gave some good advice to consider: “Worry is ingratitude in advnce” Advance worry – such a waste! Recently I had a situation. My vehicle was in the body shop and the work was done on a Friday. The shop owner convinced me that I should come Saturday even though he was only open a half day. He swore that he was open to noon every Saturday. I live 3 hours north of the body shop and in the back of my mind I was preferring the idea of going down on Monday not Saturday but I had told him I would come. I drove for 2 hours before I get any phone reception so I left before 9 am and called him as a soon as I got reception which put me about an hour away from his shop. There was no answer so...

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Adopted – what does it mean?

I do know that I will ever forget about the moment when I was informed I was adopted. I don’t remember how old I was, somewhere between 8-12 years old I would guess. I do remember the absolute devastation of discovering that parents I knew as my parents were in fact not my birth parents. Now that I am older I wonder why I felt so devastated. Maybe I thought I was being told in preparation to be sent to someone else. I really don’t know why it was such an emotional blow to me. Part of the internal turmoil I experienced might have had to do with the fact that after I was told, I was also sworn to secrecy. No one must know for whatever reason. I struggled with the idea of having been adopted for much of youth I would have to say. It wasn’t a subject for discussion or questions it just was something I had to learn to accept and understand on my own. Please don’t think ill of my parents who raised me. This was all new to them too! In their generation (both of them were born in the 1940s) you just didn’t talk about things like this so really I am grateful that I was at least told. There wasn’t an instruction manual available to them on how to go about informing me so they just did what seemed right to the best of their understanding. My parents who raised me created me in so many ways and giving birth to me wasn’t necessary for this evolution to transpire. They gave me morals, values, ethics, love, joy and wonderful environment for that evolvement. As I grew older I came to think of being adopted as having been chosen rather than having been...

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A new year – I better start writing again

Here we are with a new canvas in front of us. A new year has dawned and so many people I know are just so grateful 2020 is over! Everyday is a new day – just because the numeric number of the year changes it’s really more important to live your life for each new moment. Every moment is a gift and every day is a gift. A gift for each of us and a gift we can give others. Let your presence be a gift to others this year and take each moment in life as the gift it is to you! Let’s all be grateful for the good that we can find in each moment and day and each new year is that cumulative wealth of moments shared. Keep your head up and stay above the clouds that might try to bring you down!!

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Love

Anyone who knows me knows that my pups are pretty important to me and source of great joy in my life.  Ever since I started living on my own I have had at least one dog.  For a while, whilst I lived in Texas with my big backyard and house I was actually up to 3 dogs and a cat. In the more recent ears (until about 5 years ago) I had just one dog and a cat.  Boeing (dog) & Milo (cat).  Boeing & Milo loved each other and were great friends and playmates. Then Sky joined our life! Sky Boeing & Milo all got along perfectly!  There was a little period of getting to know each other for Milo (the cat) and Sky.  But both quickly accepted one another.  Boeing never had a problem with Sky.  Boeing was about 14 years old when I got Sky who was still essentially a puppy .  Sky was about a year old when I brought her home. When Boeing passed away it became very obvious that Sky did not like to be left alone and so I found a puppy for us all on petfinder.com.  Zulu was about 8 weeks old when we picked him up and has proved to be the perfect complement to our family.  Zulu has always been completely comfortable being left at home when I have to go to work or other places and as such has made Sky more comfortable being without me.  Sky and Zulu bonded instantly and they just live to love one another and enjoy life! Dogs love and give so unconditionally that they are truly a terrific example for us humans who can sometimes get caught up in petty differences!  Thanks Sky, Zulu & Boeing for always being so loving to one another and to...

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Meet the Prius!

As you may recall from an earlier post, I have done a lot of work on my little Toyota Tacoma to get it fixed and back on the road after the unfortunate car accident in February.  The job was no quick job and I knew I couldn’t get her back on the road quickly if I was to do a good job.  The insurance company of the man who hit me paid for my rental car for a few weeks whilst they were trying to determine if I was at any fault in the accident.  I was in a bit of limbo because though I knew I would not be found at fault I was unsure as to the value the insurance company would assess my truck and if it would be deemed fixable or not …. The truck was a 1996 Toyota Tacoma and though that sounds old, this truck has actually gone up in value as opposed to down. I bought her for $4000 about 4-5 years ago and that was the going price.  Now you can’t buy one similar for $6000!  These trucks are known for their indestructible engines! I do wish the body had proved a little more indestructible but it’s all good now. The insurance company wound up paying me $6000 for the truck and let me buy it back from them for $350.  It cost me about $1800 in parts to fix it.  In the meantime I needed another vehicle and was in search of a vehicle that could make my 25 mile commute to work a little more fuel efficient since gas prices are so high in California.  The vehicles I would find in the $6000 price range just weren’t right for me and I couldn’t find one that fit my preconceived notion of what I wanted....

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The last couple of months … car accidents & rebuildings…

On the 17th of Feb 2016 I was rear-ended and pushed into another vehicle whilst on my way to work.  The accident on it’s own was scary and jolting to say the least! This posting is not about the accident but rather about a transition that occurred as a result.  My 1996 Toyota Tacoma truck was declared ‘totaled’ by the party at fault.  The cost to repair it was estimated at around $3900 on the cheap side and closer to 5k on the realistic end.  The insurance company at fault considered my vehicle a total loss and payed me $6000 as a comparable equivalent to my loss. They then allowed me to buy my own vehicle back for $350.  Although a total loss for the insurance overall you couldn’t buy an equivalent replacement for the truck for 6k! I priced out the basics from junk yards in the area.  $250 for a tailgate, $200 each for front and rear bumper, fenders around $75/ea hood $150 – close to $1000 for the other basics not including the most important part, the radiator support. The radiator support goes across the front end and is what the radiator is bolted to.  This piece is welded on and there are no after market or readily available junk yard parts. I started surfing Craigslist.  I found a truck with the exact year and model that was not running for $1700.  I offered him $1000 for his truck as is.  He did not accept but in the long run allowed me to buy all that I needed for the $1000!  The truck was located about 90 minutes away and a full 4-6 hours of work in disassembly.   I came home with all that I needed to reassemble my truck -except for time. here is a...

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The case of the missing Wallet!

In previous posts I have written about my core outlook on life which includes seeing the good in situations and recognising glass as half full or almost full as opposed to half-empty or empty.  Another key ingredient in my mindset is the belief of good in mankind in general and to eliminate any temptation to allow worry or fear become a driving force in the way I think of or approach a situation. I was once told that worry is, in essence, ‘ingratitude in advance’!  I love that thought!  I try to focus on being grateful for the things at hand as opposed consuming time and energies with the ungratefulness of worry for those things in the future.  You can’t really worry about things in the past so worry is only an activity wasted on things that may or may not come about in the future! Why do I mention this?  Well, Weds. the 30th of September, 2015 I was preparing for my trip to the UK (leaving on the 31st).  I went to REI (a outdoor clothing & accessories store) and tried on a pair of pants.  In the process of trying on the pants I wanted to be sure my wallet fit comfortably in my pocket so I put my wallet in the side pocket.  As you can possibly guess, I forgot to take the wallet back out of my pants and since I wound up not buying the pants….well, the wallet didn’t come home with me !! I didn’t realise until later that evening that my wallet was missing.  I was in the midst of packing for my trip so I presumed I had just misplaced it during packing.  It wasn’t until much later that same evening that I had a good idea that I had lost...

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