26 December 2011

2011 in Retrospect: Places, Events, Books, and Documentaries

Can you have adventure while maintaining stability? Is it just a state of mind?
Stability is an illusion. Adventure just reminds you.

Every year I make it a goal to go places I've never been, so far I'm doing pretty good. In 2009 I must have been at least 14 locations I had never been before within Canada alone. Posing as a Captain before hoping on Planes, Ferries, Cars, and Trains all at the last second before entering somewhere completely new. Never looking at a map, just enjoying the company I was with. In 2011 I traveled mostly for work and with Family. I enjoyed seeing new places, but often was forced to navigate using all three of our maps (GPS, Google Maps, and a local paper map) at once. Not my preferred way to travel, but that's not really enough of a problem to complain about.

This years places included:

Starting in Santa Monica and driving up the 1 and the 101 the entire way back to Bellingham. We went through places like...

Big Sur


Nappa Vally

Good Ol' Arcata

the 'Avenue of the Giants'

Wild Cat

... no maps or GPS out here...

...at Lost Coast.

and San Francisco.

Stayed in Atlanta for a week for work,

and was able to see the Aquarium my last day.

In Bellingham I went on many adventures on my trusted steed!

Swimming in the bay with Lucky

The mountain where I live, i found many new exciting trails to go riding on.

Up to Lost Lake with Divo

Found Chuckanut Ridge, quite dangerous place to ride, but well worth the excitement.

This is where bog-monsters live.

Visiting my dear friends Wesly and Shana in Aspen, Colorado.

Thank you Wes and Shana, you both are very dear to me <3

In the Smoky Mountains

I don't have any of my own Images of my trip to Arizona to visit my pops with my sister, but she took many pictures with her camera. Visit Her Blog about our trip.

This was the beginning our our Hawaii trip, just a short week on the north shore before my sister leaves to New Zealand.

All this while also traveling to Vancouver Canada almost every weekend. One of my two favorite weekends in Vancouver was the Ciliate shows. Links and pictures to the events:

First show, pictures by Luke. Took place in a basement, but you never would have noticed unless I had said so. Amazing fun, amazing people.

Second Show, Main Event Page, Preparation Photos, then The Show In Action. I would have posted my favorite pictures here, but there are just so many good ones to choose from. In all it included live music, art, fashion, live glass blowing, dancing, and more I'm sure.

Next Ciliate show in March, so therefore I have been spending most my time painting and drawing in the studio every day. I've stayed home regularly and its made this last month of the year a bit hazy. But hula-hooping, painting, and reading has kept my spirits high during these dark months. Books I've read and very much enjoyed this year have included:

The Elegant Universe: Superstrings, Hidden Dimensions, and the Quest for the Ultimate Theory. It is a very easy read for someone who does not study physics regularly. There has also been a documentary that came out by the author of the book.

Watch The Elegant Universe: Part 1 on PBS. See more from NOVA.

Just after starting that book, i received this movie from a friend, a must see.

The Ancient Secret of the Flower of Life: Volume 1. If you've ever been interested about ancient history or sacred geometry, this book is for you.

Calvin and Hobbs: There is Treasure Everywhere, and The Days are just Packed. If I ever am feeling like having a slow morning, I pick these bad boys up and stay in bed till I finish the book.

So Good For Little Bunnies. If you have kids, or know someone with kids, get them this book! Best children's book ever. Yes, my friend gave it to me for my birthday, but its been on my wish list for a while.

Let's-Bring-Back: An Encyclopedia of Forgotten-Yet-Delightful, Chic, Useful, Curious, and Otherwise Forgotten Commendable Things from Times Gone By. I picked up this book for its practicle use, its delightful design, and because when I opened it up there was a woodblock print of a man wearing a monicle. And if that doesn't sell you on it, I don't know what would.

Alices Adventures in Wonderland and Through the Looking Glass. I don't really care that its a childrens book, if you read it you'll realize the amount of philosophy within the context of the book. As well as the play of the english language, one of my favorite quotes:
"and the moral of that is-'Be what you would seem to be'-or, if you'd like it put more simply-'Never imagine yourself not to be otherwise than what it might appear to others that what you were or might have been was not otherwise than what you had been would have appeared to them to be otherwise.'"
Oh yes, that is a real sentance. And yes, its gramatically correct.

Shantaram. Its practlically 4 stories in one. I biography of an Australian who escapes prison and runs away to India. He goes from living in the city, then the country, the the slum, then joins the mafia, and so on. This guy was finally caught, and while he was in prison he started writing this book. During that time the script had been found and distroyed 3 different times. His Fourth try he finally succeeded. This is his work and its increadible. Full of great insight about the world, and society.

Ideas of the Great Philosophers. Quick and easy read about philosophical ethics, politics, religion, and metaphysics. Each catagory covers several ideas from leading philosophers of all time. Good read for a quick overview or refresher corse if you've ever read Sophie's World.

Aesop's Fables. Its the closest I get to reading history.

The Power of Now. I've alway been a fan of Eckhart Tolle, and this is where it all begins. If your looking for clearity in your life, this will put a great perspective on it.

A lot has happened this last year. Many monumental changes. Not just with myself, but the world. I've severed ties, and am finally in a place where I can pack my bags and head out the door. I really don't know what my future holds, but some advice I recieved from a friend is to 'Embrace my Lostness.' I've been working hard on being present in the moment, and I'm okay with not knowing what's ahead. Learning to forgive and be greatful for what I have has helped me appreciate life more. My birthday is going to mark many big changes for my own life. I'm as prepared as I can be for the changes, and will have to embrace some losses. In exchange for that, new journeys are ahead. And because I'm not planning my future, I cant say what its going to be. What I do know is I have a ticket to New York then Europe, and will have a 3 month Eurail Pass. From there its all a mystery.

So here is to a new year, the Year of the Dragon. I hope that everyone finds a way to make this year as prosperous as can be.

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