Paranoia, Censorship and Freedom of Expression

They had guns but I wasn’t afraid. I didn’t believe that I’d be shot. I was perplexed, annoyed, and shocked by the absurdity of the situation. We were trying to cross the Chinese border from Tibet into Nepal. We were asked to declare any reading material – and consequently did so. I had a Nepal Lonely Planet book which I […]

Death and New Beginnings

I haven’t got angry or lost it with anyone for a long long time.  Still, I lost it with a poor Enterprise car hire employee. I think his name was Pierce. (Sorry Pierce). We had just been told that my Taid didn’t have long to live and we had decided to hire a car to drive up to the hospital to […]

My Strengths and Personality Type According to Myers-Briggs and Gallup

I’m still figuring out if knowing my strengths and personality type is useful or not. I think it is. Myers-Briggs was helpful in highlighting my strengths and areas where I could excel or work on.  It’s a personality test that will classify you as one of sixteen personality types developed by the psychologist Carl Jung. I’m an ENTP apparently. I don’t think […]

Slowing Down?

I’ve recently been forced to slow down. I’m not in a position to be as active or sociable right now. It’s a good thing in lots of ways, but it is deeply frustrating! Fortunately, it’s temporary and I’m going to make the most of being able to take it easy to focus on a few things I might not be able […]

What to Pack for a Trip of a Lifetime!

I’m often asked for recommendations on what to pack for extended trips.  So, here they are. I know….if you’re saving for travel, the last thing you want to hear is that you need to buy more! But trust me, my advice will enhance your travelling experience 🙂 But first of all: Packing Pack as little as possible.  Seriously! A heavy load will weigh you […]

Is Himeji Castle Worth Visiting?

If you want to see one of the best traditional Japanese castles in Japan, Himeji Castle is definitely worth visiting. Why? Himeji is a UNESCO heritage site and the oldest preserved castle in Japan. It’s been beautifully restored. The adjoining garden is also very pretty. How do you get there? Trains that travel between Hiroshima/Okayama and Osaka/Kyoto often stop at […]

Is Naoshima Worth Visiting?

Naoshima is an island in the inland sea with a few art installations. It’s one of the top picks in the Lonely Planet “Japan” guide book and is highly rated on TripAdvisor. It’s a bit of a trek to get to though, so… Is Naoshima worth visiting?  Maybe. If you have plenty of time, it’s a sunny day, you like modern […]

The Best Books I Read in 2015

I read a load of interesting books in 2015. Here are some of my favourites: Mindfulness Search Inside Yourself by Chang-Meng Tan – this is one of the most practical books about mindfulness and emotional intelligence I’ve read. 10% Happier: How I tamed the Voice in My Head, Reduced Stress without Losing My Edge, and Found Self-Help that Actually Works by Dan Harris […]

My 2015 Annual Review

I’ve never done this before – written a personal annual review. Not formally anyway. I’ve always dismissed it as self indulgent and a waste of time. I’m feeling unfocused and unaligned at the moment. So, having seen so many people I respect share their successes and failures, I’m going to give it a go. I have no idea how to approach this. Live Your […]