Freedom

It’s been almost three weeks since I up and left my job with my girlfriend. We had enough and decided that we needed to take some holidays and change our lifestyle. The London lifestyle just wasn’t working out for us anymore, and so we decided to leave it all behind and start a fresh somewhere new and follow our dream of travelling.

So here I am now in Madrid, casually sipping a cup of tea whilst I write this, without any worry of having to get anything done before I go to work. It’s great. I know that it is not forever and that soon I will have to start looking for work again, but our plan is to take ourselves a well deserved holiday first. So far, it’s feeling fantastic. You don’t really realise how hard you work until you don’t have to anymore, so this bit R&R time is exactly what we needed.

So technically we’ve already been on holiday for about three weeks now, however there is much more to come. After a quick visit to my family in London near the end of May, we plan to have a trip to the Greek Islands. We are really looking forward to it as neither of us has taken a proper holiday for about two years….we really need it!

We know that we will have to work again eventually as unfortunately money doesn’t last forever( WHY??? ), but until that time….we are free!!

 

 

Pour ma dame en rose

Si seulement je pouvais vous dire

tout ce que je voulais dire:

Je voudrais vous dire que je veux me perdre dans vos yeux

qui brillent comme la lune sur l’oceon

Que j’ai envie de sentir tes levres parfaites

donnez-moi le baiser parfait

Et que je donnerais mille couchers de soleil

juste pour voir votre sourire

Je voudrais vous dire que vous etes mon ange, mon seul…mon tout

The precipice

He stood there, rocking slightly as he braced himself against the wind that was blowing hard into his face. A stone loosened itself from beneath his foot and fell….down, down, down the cliff face, on the precipice of which he stood. He watched it, the stone, as it fell and continued to watch it as it plummeted towards the rocky river bed hundreds of feet below. He counted the seconds until its size rendered it invisible from such a height, though he thought he could hear a faint click a few seconds later, as it landed with a clash on the rocks below.

We stand upon the brink of a precipice. We peer into the abyss — we grow sick and dizzy. Our first impulse is to shrink from the danger. Unaccountably we remain. By slow degrees our sickness, and dizziness, and horror, become merged in a cloud of unnameable feeling. By gradations, still more imperceptible, this cloud assumes shape, as did the vapor from the bottle out of which arose the genius in the Arabian Nights. But out of this our cloud upon the precipice’s edge, there grows into palpability, a shape, far more terrible than any genius, or any demon of a tale, and yet it is but a thought, although a fearful one, and one which chills the very marrow of our bones with the fierceness of the delight of its horror. It is merely the idea of what would be our sensations during the sweeping precipitancy of a fall from such a height. ~ Edgar Allen Poe

He wondered, as he stood there balancing on the brittle edge between life and death, how it would feel to take that fateful step forward. He imagined it. Imagined closing his eyes and allowing himself to sail through the air, not watching the end as it came towards him as fast as it surely would. He imagined enjoying the sensation of flight in his descent and it continuing for an eternity, for at such a height there would almost certainly be no feeling. One would simply transition from this life into the next.

…The next? He contemplated, even though he didn’t believe in heaven or hell, if there was indeed a life beyond this one. He thought about the words of religious people promising damnation upon those who end their own life, an eternity burning in the fires of hell. He didn’t believe all that.

He opened his eyes once more and took in the scenery that surrounded him. The mountains, proud and majestic as they stood bathed in the warm golden glow cast upon them by the setting sun. The great river below snaking its way through the valley, transforming itself from the epitome of serenity into a wild raging animal frothing at the mouth as it tore over the rapids below. Even from such a height he could hear her mighty roar as it carried on the wind. He inhaled all of it, the sights, the smells, the sounds, and with a smile he closed his eyes for the last time as he let himself fall.

Time slowed as he fell. The seconds seemingly lasting an eternity as he plummeted through the air in free fall, with his arms spread wide about him. Finally opening his eyes, he reached across his chest, pulled the cord and howled with ecstatic joy as he revelled in the adrenaline filled high which only B.A.S.E jumping could provide him.

Freefly-BASE-jump-in-Norway-Red-Bull-Soul-Flyers

Her eyes

A world without colour

Now could you imagine that,

A world where all that we see

Are in hues of white and black.

 

Could you find it possible

To live in monotone colour,

A tedious life with no difference

Between one and the other.

 

I can think of but one thing

Wait make that two,

That in a world void of colour

Without which I simply could not do.

 

A pair of eyes I confess

without a shadow of a doubt,

Belonging to my love

Whom I could never be without.

 

So strip my world of all colour

But spare me just one hue,

In her eyes I pray

You will leave her deep ocean blue.

 

Read what other colours people would keep in a world stripped of colour at the daily prompt here : http://dailypost.wordpress.com/dp_prompt/local-color/

When the lion feeds

It had been ages since I had picked up a novel, years even. I honestly don’t know why as I was always somewhat of an avid reader. I love reading. My life, however, had been changed in an instant. All of a sudden my family and I had up and left to a new country, this country and the few years that followed were a roller-coaster of emotion, fear and depression. Trying to get settled in a new country isn’t easy, without a place to stay, without a job etc etc. On top of all of that my father’s Alzheimer’s became truly apparent and he spiralled into the reaches of the disease from which there was no return. Life as I knew it, had been changed forever.

Eventually, after my unwillingness to accept this new life, I did realise that there simply was no going back. The only way was forward and I had to embrace my present in order to have any kind of future. It was during this period that I finally realised just how long it had been since I had picked up a book, and suddenly I yearned for it. The smell that greets you with every freshly turned page of a previously unopened novel, the crisp feeling of the new pages between your fingertips, the bold black lettering of it’s unread words.
I longed to be transported into the world within the pages, to experience it as described by the author. I longed to meet the characters, to relate to them, and to experience their emotions as I accompany them on their journey from the first page to the last.

The question was, which book would I read? There are so many books out there and it can be difficult to find a book that you enjoy, a book that will deliver the experience that a well written book should. It was for this reason that I decided on an author rather than a genre. I began to think about the books that I had read and which had been most captivating to me and immediately a book came to mind. Birds of Prey by Wilbur Smith. What a magnificent piece of writing. It was therefore that I decided to go in search of Wilbur Smith’s novels.

Upon finding his novels, there was one whose title, due to my nostalgic feelings for Africa, stood out to me.

When the Lion feeds

2014-10-13 20.50.31

I reached out to take the new paperback from the shelf, running my fingers over the front cover as I pictured the African sunset in my mind. Turning over to the back page, I was immediately captivated by the blurb. I had to read it.

I spent the majority of the next few days in a life beside my own, travelling back and forth to the world within my book, each time more and more unwilling to return to the world outside of it’s crisp pages.

Wilbur Smith is an artist with words. So great his talent that he draws you in to the world described in his pages, to live the lives of the characters and to feel their joy, their fear, their sorrow. So incredible his writing is, that I am truly upset when I finish one of his books.

When The Lion Feeds is the book that got me reading again and Wilbur Smith set me back on the path of book reading, and I would like to thank him for every journey and adventure he has taken me on ever since.

The enemy of my enemy is my friend?

Sounding like something out of ” The Art of War “, I’m not sure exactly where this phrase originates from. The first recorded use of the current English version was around 1884.

The ideology was used and quite clearly on display during the second world war. It is much more recent events, however, that bring me to the contemplation of the meaning of the phrase and it’s use.

It is true that nothing works quite as well in bringing people together like giving them a common enemy. Common ground is the foundation for cooperation. My question is — How stable is that foundation between two enemies?

The enemy of my enemy is my friend….now take away one enemy. Either way you are left with your ” friend ” being your enemy. The enemy is my friend, or my enemy is my friend. You see what I am getting at? Now consider a more recent phrase…frenemy. Yes, it is a ridiculous term, the combination of ” friend ” and ” enemy “. However, it becomes totally relevant when you put the phrase and the term together.

The enemy of my enemy is my friend could also be… the enemy of my enemy, is my frenemy.

I know it sounds ridiculous, but look a little closer.

Frenemy….a concept mostly seen in girls. Granted, guys are guilty of it too, but women take it to a whole new level. Pretence; Having a profound dislike for someone yet pretending to be their friend when they are around. Often going through great lengths to disguise their deceit.

Being in the company of two girls, you would think that they are the best of friends. Individually though, you see a whole new light as the screen of pretence is lifted and the truth is on clear display. It’s really quite incredible to watch first hand, and to see how easy it is for some.

You see, once you combine the phrase and the term you can achieve a whole new level of chaos. Yes, there is use for it in wars etc, where it is sometimes necessary for such evil to take place in order to achieve a greater purpose. In everyday life though, is it really necessary to go through all that effort? I see people happily talking to one another only to bad mouth them later to someone else. Why?

The answer is a sore truth. No one wants to be alone. To be truthful sometimes means that you will stand alone, surrounded by enemies. My truth though is that the enemy of my enemy may be my friend, or he may be my enemy too. I am not afraid to stand alone for what I believe in, because I believe in myself and I am not afraid to tell the enemy of my enemy, that they too are my enemy. I would rather have an enemy than have a friend that isn’t truly a friend… because that is the worst kind of enemy that anyone could have. A knife is the chest is preferable over a knife in the back. At least that is my opinion.

enemy

Commonalities of writing and exercise

It has occurred to me that writing can be and is somewhat, in someway similar to exercise in that, the more you do it, the better you get at it and the better you look. How is that so?
Well if you do exercise or go to gym, or do any kind of sport really you will know that it takes time to achieve your goal, to improve to achieve a certain performance level. The key is that the more you do it, the better you get. Practice and training are essential in improvement.

The same is true, as any experienced writer or blogger will tell you, with writing. You can’t come from nowhere and expect to write a best selling novel of the bat, just like you wouldn’t expect to start swimming one day and win an Olympic gold medal in a few months. It just doesn’t work that way.

Talent plays a huge part of course, however it is possible for someone without that natural talent to develop the skill. It only takes the desire to improve, the determination and practice, practice, practice!

Now, as any gym goer and sportsman will tell you, variance is vital. If you go to the gym and you repeat the same training plan over and over again, you will reach a dead end. Your muscles will not grow any bigger, you will not get any faster etc. There is a term in physics called terminal velocity. This is when a free falling object due to one of Newton’s laws of motion which states that every action has an equal but opposite reaction. Therefore any force applied is reacted by an equal but opposite force ( something to that effect…it’s been ages since I last did physics, so I apologise for my lack of correct terminology.) This means that the free falling object is exerting a force ( due to gravitational pull ) as Force = mass x acceleration, and therefore has and equal but opposite force acting upon it. The object therefore reaches a point where due to these equal forces it no longer accelerating, instead falls at a constant speed called it’s terminal velocity.
One of Newton’s laws states that an object will either remain at rest or continue to travel at a constant velocity unless an external force is applied to it…. This would probably be the correct law that terminal velocity falls under, though the other explanation does still apply to an extent.
In sports and exercise, this would be labeled muscle memory. Your muscles get used to doing a certain action that they no longer respond to that particular action, pace of action and/or amount of repetition. They have reached their terminal velocity. This results in a plateau effect, where your muscles no longer grow in size, or your performance does not increase any further. Therefore something needs to change, an outside force must be applied, in order to achieve the desired effect and performance increase, and is the reason you will never see any sports training sessions being the same as the one before.
Again I tell you that the same is true for writing, if you write in exactly the same style, about the same thing every time, you will not change, nor improve. You will reach your terminal velocity, no longer accelerating, no longer gaining followers of your work. Subtle though the changes may be, they are crucial not just for you in improving your writing, but for your readers too. Nobody wants to read the exact same thing over and over again, no matter how good it may be. All writers have a niche, however by practising and change their routine a little from time to time ensures that they improve their technique and increase their number of followers. i.e. the better your writing looks.

Unfortunately however, though they have commonalities, one will not necessarily help with the other. Being a good writer will unfortunately not give you a supermodel like physique, as great as that would be and exercising physically doesn’t make you a great writer.
However, research does show that exercise is linked with increase in academics, which in turn means that it could improve your writing ability somewhat but having a supermodel physique doesn’t automatically make you a novelist.

I like to do both and the fact of the matter is that for both, in order to progress you need to put in the time and the effort.